My Dress, The Tornado, and Me
by Matese Towns
(Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Tuscaloosa County)
Everyone wants to be beautiful on their wedding day. I'm no exception. When my first choice of wedding gown was rejected by my mother, I knew I had to find a dress I could live with, plus a great price and pleased my mother.
So I looked at dresses online and kept note of what I liked. There is a store in my current town called Dirt Cheap. What Dirt Cheap does is purchase the wares of other stores like Wal-mart or Target.
These wares, some of them salvaged or just taken off the shelf, are resold with percentage off. Their inventory changes every week, so you never know what they will be selling from one week to the next. One day I went to Dirt Cheap, and they had wedding dresses.
Oh a whim, I picked a few to try on. None of them fit, except one. It was an Alfred Angelo dress, size 16W, with a button train and a halter top. On top of that, it was 70% off the price of $650 and it fit me perfectly. The only thing wrong with it was that the halter lacked buttons, something I could personally fix.
I knew in my heart that it was my dress. But being a poor college student, I decided to wait for the price to go down more. Enter April 27th, 2011, which was a few weeks after I discovered the dress.
In the course of one hour, my entire neighborhood and parts of the town I loved were destroyed by a massive F4 tornado. It even passed by my apartment, coming within 30 feet of my location, and made me homeless for about a month. I feared the worse, as the dress was located 2.5 miles from my apartment.
A week later, I returned to assess the damages myself, and also to see if the Dirt Cheap with my wedding dress survived the deadly tornado. As it would turn out, the tornado didn't even touch that area. So I was overjoyed to discover that not only did the store exist, my dress was still there waiting for me, and 80% off.
Not long after that, I bought the dress for $130 dollars. And that's how I ended up with a dress that made my mother happy, and made me proud to buy.