I'm a copywriter and freelance writer living in Melbourne.
My novel, Another New York Murder, is available online.
Published August 30th 2013
Even in Sorrento, the Op Shop Rules
Sorrento has always been one of the jewels of the Mornington Peninsula. Watched over by the majestic Continental Hotel, Hotham Road is a hive of affluent activity all year round and a popular destination for the well-heeled amongst us.
But away from the Bentleys and Ferraris, the $6 coffees and the galleries of precious somethings, lie two Aladdin's caves proving to some that even in the playground of the rich, the oi shop reigns supreme. I think it's refreshing to find places like this in Sorrento, sitting as they do, like an old pair of sneakers with an expensive suit.
[ADVERT]The Sorrento-Portsea Axillary Rosebud Hospital Op Shop peddles its wares in an old shed. As you enter you're greeted with row upon row of pre-loved clothing waiting for you to dive right in. There's gold in these racks. Passing through a portal laden with shoes and bags you will enter the bric-a-brac section and here the treasure hunting really starts.
Your skills at telling trash from treasure will face as stern a test as in any op shop. Books, toys, homewares, old radios, records, tapes, cds and other media, glasses and various chattels of days past and memories faded gather in here ready for you. Like all good op shops, your purchases will be lovingly audited by the volunteer staff and when they take so precious little of your money you'll be sure they have undercharged, but therein lies the greatest beauty of this place: they haven't. It really is this cheap.
You Break It, You Buy It! Luckily, it won't break the bank!
Jack and Andy's St John's & St Andrews Anglican Op Shop is a more orderly store with the treasure spread through an old house. Stepping inside you are greeted by the warmth of a nanna's house, a perfect environment for some treasure hunting. As you move though the thoughtfully arranged booty, there's a sense of responsibility here, a sense that what you take from the shelves to your home is more than just a trinket or something for a few bucks. Everything here has an heirloom quality to it. You feel, as you do in the best op shops, that something is being passed on to you, you are being entrusted. It's a sort of magic that cannot be duplicated.