So much for this bitter, jaw-jiggling cold. We’re headed south for the winter.

South, where the windchill is a scintilla less sharp, the temp at least a degree more merry and where prairie dogs roam when they’re not being chased by lions or, we don’t know, hibernating? We’re no prairie dog experts. But we are freezing, and we are outta here.

Southern Maine, here we come.

Bag Lady and Shopping Siren are kicking off 2012 with their first virtual (read: Web-assisted) road trip, hitting towns within 25 miles of the New Hampshire border.

This week: York.

That just sounds sunny, doesn’t it?

* York’s Wild Kingdom, $21.25/$16.25 (adult/child zoo and ride package)

The lengthy list of wildlife includes an African lion and a prairie dog, surely with a healthy-respect-for-life physical distance between the two. There’s also a coatimundi, DeBrazza guenon and prevost squirrel, all of which Bag Lady has never heard, and sure, I could Google, but where’s the adventure in that?

The park opens for the season May 26. May will be here before we know it. We (shiver, shiver, shiver) hope.

* Cocktail hour gift set, Stonewall Kitchen, $17.95

Includes a cheeseball mix, pomegranate Cosmo mixer and sea salt crackers. Um, yes, please?

* Country ketchup, 16 oz., Stonewall Kitchen, $6.50

“All natural” with a “chunky consistency,” an adventure for your palate.

* Ski chair, The Daisy Trading Co., $299.00

Adirondack chairs made from skis and cedar. This summer we admired a bench very much like this sitting outside Smedberg’s in Oxford. Ahh, summer.

* Shower Busters, The Daisy Trading Co., $3.95

A ball of either peppermint, citrus, tea tree or lavender oil, placed in the shower, “activated” by indirect spray; it promises an enveloping, aromatherapy spa experience. Frankly, we were expecting something different with the name “Shower Busters,” but aromatherapy is nice, too.

* Shawshank Prison T-shirt, Woods to Goods, $20

Woods to Goods is a Maine prison-made store, so, given that, something seems a little off about a shirt with skull and crossbones and “The beatings will continue until morale improves.” Maybe there’s a higher degree of whimsy in the clink than one might guess.

* Beehive Birdhouse, Woods to Goods, $35

Hmm. Made from Maine pine by someone doing time. Ha! Er, just giving that whimsy thing a try.

Best find: Duck feet slippers, The Daisy Trading Co., $19.95

Cozy and darling, and more anatomically accurate than most duck feet slippers. The only shame: They aren’t made for adults.

Think twice: Boogerboy Boris Egg Separator, Woods to Goods, $20

A ceramic face holding its hand to one nostril. Presumably the egg is cracked over the skull and egg white drips out the nose. Comes in blue, white, green or What Are They Thinking. Quick, where’s that lion?

Bag Lady and Shopping Siren’s true identities are protected by a pair of stylish, sweater-wearing Doberman pinschers (who remain wild at heart but on the couch in body) and the Customer Service counter at the Sun Journal. You can reach them at [email protected] and [email protected]


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