One Hundred Four. That Voodoo that You Do.

July 13, 2011 § Leave a comment

On Day One Hundred Four I met up with my friend Kelly to visit Rondo’s, a voodoo type shop downtown. The store was on a list of ideas she had come up with under the new activities category. Since I suck at driving in Downtown Atlanta, I met her at hers to lead the way. We managed to find a sweet parking spot right out front and headed in.

The shop graces Mitchell street between an old school salon and credit union. From the outside it looked like a non-descript 1940’s era storefront. Inside a chest high glass display cabinet lined the room, with space between it and the wall for the employees to walk around and help customers. The interior resembled a witchy jewelry store selling potions and incense.

We wandered over to colorfully marked small bottles with titles like “Shut Your Mouth” and “Moneybags” to quiet liars and win money respectively. There was even one called “Showers of Gold.” I giggled at another, more lewd meaning. I pulled out my point and shoot to snap a picture. One of the employees hollered that I was not allowed take pictures. I quickly apologized and shoved the camera back into my bag. This was not a good start to my adventure into the charms and potions of voodoo.

We picked up a catalogue sitting on the counter and started to flip through. Kelly was familiar with some of the items- Mojo Bags (which came with a little satchel), anointment (scented oil to wear), and some sort of prayer book. I didn’t see a mojo bag that piqued my interest. I didn’t really know what I wanted. The employee who had previously scolded me for taking pictures came over to help us. I use “help” in the loosest form. Figuring career advancement was an appropriate desire, I asked him about what mojo bags or kits I should buy. He pointed me to the “get a job” kit. I said I already had a job. He asked how long I had worked there. When I told him almost ten years, on and off, he guffawed and chastised me. In the subsequent couple of minutes while I tried to defend my desire for career advancement he exclaimed that I should be grateful to have a job, that I should not be greedy, and should manage my money better if what I made wasn’t enough. I wanted to cry. I think I may have even welled up a little. I’m not used to strangers, especially strangers supposedly selling me something, berating me. I changed my story a little and said I meant that I really just had a blog and I wanted it to become profitable. He calmed a little and recommended High John the Conqueror, a very powerful herb that brings luck and overcomes difficulty. I could go with that.

Then Kelly asked about a break-up mojo bag that her friend had asked her to look into. Kelly tried to describe the situation to the angry man behind the counter. He was just as rude to Kelly as me, essentially telling her that maybe she should mind her own business. So we had walked in planning to spend like $40 on these mojo bags, but instead were given some twisted lesson in humility.

Once the guy walked away and a nicer man came over to help us we had chosen our wares. Kelly bought a good luck cat and a “Find-A-Job” charm. It came with two pieces, one to carry with you and one to leave at your house, bring luck to yourself and home. I chose the High John the Conqueror root which looks like a shriveled walnut and smells of incense. I also chose a bat head root good luck charm that you bury in your front yard. It named for its shape, looking like a shriveled little bat head. But I like luck.

We paid for our charms and accepted an anointment from the friendly salesman, who winked and said it was for good luck and money. Never having been involved in many religious ceremonies I awkwardly rubbed the bright green solution over my hands questioningly, as one would a spurt from a hand sanitizer. Kelly and I stopped for lottery tickets on the way home to test the luck of our anointment. Kelly won a free ticket, so maybe the green stuff worked.

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