28 September 2020

El amor en los tiempos del corona: Buying Cologne

Up until now, whenever I would be needing a new fragrance, I would somehow find myself at the duty-free section of an airport. And I would be arriving early enough before my flight so that I would have time to browse the fragrance section and try out several different scents before I eventually settle down on what I want. However, because of the pandemic, I haven't been to an airport in a long time. So I needed to find an alternative when my bottle of cologne I have been using for the summer was running out.

So I headed to a department store. However, they had hygiene regulations that made shopping for cologne rather unpleasant. They decided that people would not be allowed to touch the testers. Rather, they said they would be more than happy to assist shoppers when testing these fragrances. That meant however that someone would be hovering next to you and spraying a test on these little pieces of paper whenever you indicate that you want to test something. And this is something I didn't like. I didn't like the idea that someone would be hovering next to me as I took my time figuring out what I wanted. That would be pressure.

Anyway, fortunately I found alternative shops. I found a perfumerie who had a different hygiene regulation. This other store allowed people to touch the testers, and spray it on pieces of paper themselves. However, every fifteen minutes, someone would be going through the aisles and polishing the testers with a disinfectant cloth, so that whatever germs I would have in my hand would be eradicated. As I was taking my time, I witnessed this procedure at least twice, as I figured out what I eventually wanted.

In any case, it was an interesting shopping experience. Yes, some adaptations had to be made, and sometimes these just make the entire user experience a bit weird. Hopefully, the next time I need to buy cologne we'd be back to normal.

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