Big but….


(Monument to Big Posteriors)

I went shopping in Oviedo, today. There’s a big department store, like Arnotts or Debenhams, near our hotel. I headed off after breakfast. As there’s no room to fit anything in my bag (or Denis’, I’ve checked) it’s unlikely I was going to buy anything….. but you never know. I wandered around the ladies department but those clothes were for old ladies. So I went up to the younger ladies (!) department. And I spotted some very cute tops and dresses and jeans by a Spanish company I’d never heard of, it started with a D? Anyway, I decided to try on some, wasn’t sure of the sizes so took a medium and a large of each one and headed off to the changing room.

IMG 7955

(Big Barrel)

It was a great big room with loads of mirrors, perfect for seeing all angles. It even had a lock…. maybe I was in the store room? Anyway, I tried on the first top but I couldn’t get it over my head, must be a fault. Never mind, I had the large size, so I tried that. I probably shouldn’t have been so determined but I was… and I got it on. Seeing all the angles wasn’t such an asset now.

IMG 7970

(Big Pot)

It must have been… “faulty” too and I wasn’t sure how I was going to get it off. There was a moment when I considered life, the universe and everything…… but then I held my breath and wriggled out of it. I had four more beautiful tops to try but none of them was extra large, and there was every possibility extra large would have been “faulty” too! Turns out Spanish people are smaller than the Irish.

So that got me thinking…… What’s the big deal with sizes? My size, your size, any size?

IMG 7974

(Big Poster)

I love Gok Wan. It’s ok, Denis knows and he’s fine with it. For those of you who don’t watch as much TV as you obviously should, I’ll tell you about him. He was a very unhappy teenager and he was overweight, but he lost the weight and got interested in fashion and now he has a programme on TV called “How to Look Good Naked”.  I get a warm feeling every time I watch it. So, at the start of the programme we meet a woman (I think there’s been men too) who hates her body and thinks she’s too fat. There’s lots of tears as Gok gets her to strip off to her underwear to find out exactly what she hates. Then he hugs her.

IMG 7943

(Big Church)

The next bit of the program is the turning point. Gok has four or five women (who are fine with their size/shape) in their underwear standing in a row. They are standing in order of size of whatever bit the original woman hates about herself. For example, if she hates her tummy, the women are lined up left to right from smallest to largest tummy.

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(Another Big Posterior)

Then, (this is the magic bit), Gok asks the original woman to put herself into the lineup according to her size. And…. always, always she gets it wrong! The woman always thinks she’s bigger than she is.

Gok puts her in the correct position and she’s stunned. Something shifts in her when she realises her thinking about herself has been wrong all along. (Now the programme doesn’t stop there. Gok knows how to pick clothes that will look good no matter what shape or size the person is, so he goes shopping with her and teaches her how to shop for her body. Because each of us have a particular shape and size that’s our body, it’s ours and it needs to be honoured. Yes, Honoured, Honour your Body!)

IMG 7958

(Big Woman Statue)

But back to the shift. A shift is like an earthquake on the inside. We’re muddling along with our lives and something happens and….. the earth of our belief system breaks apart. So, here I am, on my way out of the (really good) big changing room and it occurs to me. The clothes in my arms at the moment have a label on them, not me……


It’s the clothes that have the problem with size!


(Big Bread)


So I handed them back to the assistant saying “Poco, Poco” (Small, Small), meaning “Those poor clothes are too small.”


Honour your Body!  Mairead


PS Back to road pictures tomorrow, we’re off to Santiago de Compostela!