Bringing Home the Birkin : Mumbai

“What do you mean the waiting list is closed? It’s a waiting list. So I can’t wait?! This isn’t a restaurant, it’s not like you’re gonna stop serving. I am in Hermès, right? You do make something called the Birkin, right? Oh, wait a minute, I get it … you make them, you just don’t sell them … that makes perfect sense. Hey, I have an idea, why don’t you charge people to get on the waiting list? Oh that’s right, the waiting list is closed.” – Michael Tonello

A month ago, mom and Kevin went to India for his residency break. The five-days trip consisted of going to grand bazaars, Taj Mahal and Hermès (not necessarily in that order ;)). I once read on PurseForum that a member saw a Birkin on display in Hermès India. It was around 2009-2010, I think. I searched for the post again a few months back, but it was lost in the sea of comments and pictures. But I had high hope, that because Hermès in India are not attracting many tourists, they’d have a Birkin or two. There’re 2 Hermès stores in India, one at the Oberoi Hotel in New Delhi and one located at the Horniman Circle Garden in Mumbai. The one at Oberoi is located inside the hotel, right beside Burberry and Louboutin. The store is not that big and it turned out they didn’t have a B (the nice SA told my mom that he can ordered it for us, but we have to buy “anything” when the B arrived). Mom declined because she hoped to get the B on that trip instead of going back a couple of months later to pick it up.

The store in Mumbai is a lot bigger and had an abundant stock of Kelly wallets, bracelets, shoes and bags. Their first visit was quite late in the afternoon (the store closes at 7.30 pm). And I’m not sure if it’s their desperate times call for desperate measures question or they’re simply tired from the long day, they asked the SA straightly with the popular question “I’m looking for a Birkin ..” As predicted, the SA told them a flat out no. It’s an answer we have been hearing a lot (from Hermès’ SAs of course) so they went to looked for the bracelet and hat I wanted. But after looking at the many bracelets and hats, I didn’t find what I was looking for (the SA allowed mom to take pictures of the bracelets and hats so I could take a look at it first). The price is also higher in India as they don’t do tax refunds. So they decided to just pre-ordered the B and left. Seconds before leaving the store, the SA told them whether I’d be interested in another B (they told the SA the B was for my graduation present). They got confused, after all they just wrote down the specification of the B I wanted. It turned out he had a B, it’s a special order tricolor canvas B. The colors are blue jean and blue ascent, the SA called it the flag Birkin. Because it’s half-canvas-half-leather and the day was getting late, mom decided to sleep on it and came back the day after. Back home that night, I was busy searching google and PurseForum for a canvas Birkin and whether it was worth that much (the price was higher than I have ever heard of). I found very little information, but a similar B was sold much higher in a well-known authentic online shop, so I told mom to just get it hahahaha I was desperate. But when I woke up in the morning, I immediately texted mom to NOT buy the B (it was like 3 am in India). I didn’t really like the canvas bits and the colors I want were neither blue ascent or blue jean. Although I find full leather B in blue jean pretty. Since the SA saw that mom was serious about getting the B (they came to the store again the next day before their flight), he told them that the store is getting one to two Bs each month, so the odds are higher than getting a B in other part of Asia and they actually wrote on the order form so it looked legit and promising (it’s not a special order since the SA said SO is only available for residents). He also told mom that we need to spend an amount of money when the B is ready to be picked up. We knew this already, so no surprise there. And what I like about this “term” is that we can buy anything we like (bags, shoes, belts) unlike in some countries where they “force” us to buy jewelries. Since it will be expensive to buy the B and the extra $$, mom decided to buy the extra $$ first. She bought a Picotin Lock and sandals.

Days went by and it’s almost 2 months since their India trip. Too be honest I thought I’ll get the B on our upcoming summer vacation, perhaps in Frankfurt, because a couple of months ago my Deutsch-speaking cousin phoned Hermès Munich to ask whether they have a B or no, they had, but we had to wired the money first and we couldn’t choose the color we want. I was hoping when we go there, there’ll be stock on B or K. But miracle comes when you least expect it. The text came in a simple “hello” last Thursday. I was ecstatic. Good news was he got the B in Rose Jaipur *happydance* bad news was .. it had to be billed this month (May) and it was the end of the month already so we only had like 7 days to pick it up. Well, another not so good news were we just renewed our passports and it’s still at the immigration office and .. the India visa (although still available for the next 5 months or so) was on the old passport (we weren’t sure back then if the visa was still valid or no). I cannot sleep well that night hahaha. The day after was no better, the passport would be ready on Monday (thank goodness) but the SA told us we need to buy “some other things.” I didn’t realized at first that “some other things” equals another $$, but it turned out it did 😶. It was way too much. Of course he remembered that we already spent $$ on a bag and sandals but his defences were he prioritized us on the waitlist, he got us the current season newest color and it’s a lot sooner than expected. At first I told him (btw I was the one who replied the SA’s WhatsApp texts posing as my mom lol) that we’d spend another $ on bagcharm and twillies. But then he said it was too little and we needed to at least spend the aforementioned $$. After bargaining quite a bit (and me ready to let this one go) he relented and allowed us to “just” buy a Kelly wallet, twillies and bagcharm. YAY to me. But MEH to mom, dad and Kevin. Yes you read it right, for the first time in forever, Kevin bought me a birthday gift from his own hard-earned money (though maybe he just loaned it to me and add high interests secretly lol but a girl gotta fund herself right). The perks of dropping out of his residency and be a stock trader *moneymoneymoneybleh*

Calls were made. Clothes were packed. Mom decided to go alone since it’s a complete waste of money if I were to tag along. Besides, I don’t have the visa or the time to go to Mumbai for 3 days (it’s the end of the semester and OSCE SOCA are approaching fast). Luckily the Hermès store is not that far from Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (around 22.6 km and 38 minutes without traffic), so mom could stay at Hyatt Airport Hotel (5 minutes from International Terminal) before making the trip downtown the day after. It’s Wednesday, but the traffic was okay. And since mom was going back that night, she didn’t actually go anywhere besides Hermès and Pizza by the Bay (mom and Kevin said it sells one of the most delicious pizza overlooking Back Bay).

Here she is .. ready to conquer the world ❤

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The holy grail of bags : Birkin 30 Epsom in Rose Jaipur with Gold Hardware

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With Kelly Wallet in Ruby Red 👀

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More pictures coming up soon ❤

“All you need is love. But a Birkin never hurt anybody.”

xoxo

P.S. Thank you, B (you know who you are) 🙆

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