Why shopping local is always better

You’ve probably seen the sign and heard the pitch: shop local. It supports people in your community, and let’s face it, Jeff Bezos really doesn’t need any more.

Here’s my story about shopping local and why I’m stoked to have spent my money here…

Kiddo and I went to the Christmas Craft Fair (hosted by the Pemberton Children’s Centre) the other weekend. I put some money in my kid’s change purse and let him race around and “shop”, and he decided that he wanted some extra $$ from me, and I was happily chatting with a friend so just handed it over, and discovered that, instead of buying gifts for everyone he’d wanted to buy things for, he dropped all $30 on a hand-made custom stuffed platypus.

There I was thinking it was probably time we cleared out his room of stuffys. Apparently not.

But, the truth was, it was irresistible.

And it was locally made. Handmade, by Deathray by Desirae, (made with rage in her parents’ basement, as her business card reads.) From scrap fleece and fabric, to prevent any more fashion waste going to landfill.

So, I approved.

And when he got overexcited and used the platypus stuffy as a baseball bat to hit his friend, and the bill came loose, we scooted over to the table and asked Desirae if she was able to reinforce the bill, which she did, right there, whipping out her needled and thread.

And then, when we got home, the rigours of the day seem to have brought on a premature case of macular degeneration.

The repair was beyond us.

We reached out again.

“Is it possible to book surgery time with a specialist? We’re hoping we’ve caught this degenerative disease early enough that surgical intervention will help.”

“Surgery is open this week,” came the reply. “Drop him by.”

Platypus got dropped on a door. And was ready to pick up the next day, with a special protective mask for his healing.

And he’s better than ever.

And honestly, I can’t think of a cooler experience. Not only did we get to support the Children’s Centre, and local talents who are taking on the fashion industry, and making cool things, we become woven into a network of people, with skills and hearts, who make up our community.

I can’t imagine texting Jeff Bezos with a single one of my problems or jokes and getting anything in response.

Local isn’t just a buzzword. It’s people. It’s belonging. It’s resilience and regeneration.

So, what about you? Have you got an experience that helped you remember why local can be better than global/multinational/megacorporation?

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