One week after confessing all to Marion I found myself finishing work on the Wednesday noon and following her out to her car.
I wasn't sure what to expect so I was prepared to follow her lead, my natural submissiveness in the presence of a woman who knows what she wants coming to the fore, and what she wanted was to get me kitted out with a basic female wardrobe.
She climbed into the drivers seat and I took my place in the passenger seat.
Marion had decided that we were going to drive to Southampton to do our shopping as there was less chance of us running into anyone that we would know or more importantly that we worked with.
It took us a half an hour to get there and we chatted about various things, mainly about how long I had been dressing, how I had started and about the differences between her reaction and Marina's. She agreed with me when I said that I should never have promised to stop.
We drove into the city centre and found a car park near the main shopping centre. Marion wanted us to have a variety of shops to go around in order to find what I needed.
Before we left the car though she asked me to remove my jacket. This done she produced a tape measure and proceeded to measure my chest and waist, making a note of the results.
This done we headed into the shopping centre looking like any ordinary couple.
As we walked around, looking in the shop windows, we were trying to decide where to start. Marion decided that we should start from the inside out. I needed lingerie.
Choosing one of the department stores we headed inside and made our way towards the lingerie department.
Today I wouldn't bat an eyelid and in the company of an attractive, young woman (and I did find her attractive) would happily browse amongst bras, panties, slips and packets of stockings and tights. Back then I was nervous and slightly scared.
As we looked at the bras Marion decided that I needed something that screamed feminine. I wasn't going to argue as my only experience of bras was what I could borrow from my mum's draw when I was alone at home as a teenager. These tended to be for a more mature lady and of a more sturdy construction.
Marion browsed through the bras and held up each against herself so that I could see what it looked like when she found something that she liked.
I nodded or shook my head to indicate whether I thought it would look good on me or not. I'm sure that the women that were shopping there at the time thought I was her husband or boyfriend indicating whether I thought she would look good in it or not.
Eventually we settled on a white lacy underwired bra. There wasn't much to it which wasn't a problem as I didn't have much to fill it with but it was my first ever bra of my own.
Selecting panties was easier as we went with the ones that matched.
I must admit that I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of shopping for underwear with Marion and it was one I'd love to have done again.
Next came a suspender belt to match the bra and panties. Again Marion searched for something while I stood alongside looking like the attentive boyfriend and gave my agreement when she found something she approved of. Some tights and stockings were added last.
Kitted out with a set of lingerie I handed over the cash and she paid for it. If I had taken them and paid for them myself then with Marion in tow it might have looked suspicious so it was safer for her to pay.
Shoes came next and rather than try a shoe shop we stuck with the department stores. Fortunately I'm only a UK size 8 in shoes and so its possible for me to go into a shop and buy shoes.
On this occasion Marion advised me to go for something in black with a bit of heel but nothing skyscraper. We searched and searched for something and eventually found a pair of black patent leather court shoes with a 3 inch heel. High enough to look really sexy but low enough for me to learn to walk in them without spraining an ankle.
Being as we were in the middle of a shop with people wandering around we didn't dare have me try them on but they were my size and they weren't a wide fitting so we decided that I should be able to get away with them. Again I handed over the money and she paid for them.
The only things I needed now were a dress or skirt and top, a coat and handbag.
The handbag was easy enough, a simple black shoulder bag which would go with most things.
As we wandered around the shops we looked at various items. In the end I selected a plain black skirt and a white blouse with a pussycat bow in a silky material. I so loved wearing that blouse as it gave me goosebumps whenever I did.
Lastly we went in search of a coat. I'd hadn't planned on going out but it was decided that it paid to have one just in case. Marion and I found a beige raincoat that would do for mmost situations that we could think of.
A lot lighter in the wallet we made our way back to the car and drove back home.
Of course all of these clothes would need trying on and although I could do that at home in privacy, Marion did want to see me in them since she'd helped me to buy them so we set a date for me go around to her house with all my things and to make use of her bathroom to remove all my body hair, get made up and model the clothes that we had bought.
The trip to Southampton wasn't the only time that Marion and I went shopping, there was one more trip to a small dressing agency but this was for outerwear. That was another wonderful first time experience and one that I repeated a couple of times on my own before the shop closed.
Prior to going shopping the only other time I had ventured into the lingerie department to buy female underwear was for a trip to the Rocky Horror Picture Show with some friends. On that occasion I had shot into the shop, found some fishnet stickings and a basque in my size and been back out within a minutes. I'd felt extremely uncomfortable buying them because I knew that I wanted them not just for going to the show but for afterwards too. As it was my first time buying lingerie I was doubly worried in case I ended up having a conversation with the sales assistant about them.
When I was with Marion I was a lot more relaxed and we spent lots more time deciding on what to buy. Having a female there as company I think gives you more confidence because any purchases could be for them. Certainly with what we bought it could have been for her.
Now I don't even worry if I have to go shopping for lingerie. Last year I went into the lingerie department of my favourite store to try and find a bra that I could wear with a backless dress with a plunging neckline. I couldn't find anything so asked the assistant for help. We discussed what the bra was for, the size required and when she suggested that my other half come in to look herself I made an excuse that she couldn't get into town and so I was looking for her. I also went shopping at another department store last year and armed with a list of things I wanted to get, along with pictures of them from their store website, quite happily asked staff for help when I couldn't find what I wanted. I spent a lovely time browsing in case there was anything that I saw in addition to what I had gone in to buy.
Shopping with Marion certainly influenced what I bought. Having her there to give a nod of approval to my choices did mean that I was going to buy things that would suit me, at least as far as her opinion was concerned. Not having developed my own sense of style at that point it was good to at least know that I wasn't choosing things that were going to stand out too much.
Having been shopping with Marion did give me the confidence to go shopping on my own. Over the years I've bought from charity shops, big department stores and smaller shops. I've even been shopping with another woman, a Colour Me Beautiful consultant, who helped me select some outfits for a weekend away. I'd been to her to get advice on what makeup colours to use and how to apply it properly. When I mentioned that I was going away and wanted to get some good outfits to wear she offered to accompany me as a personal shopper. Again that was wonderful.
Both the trip to the dress agency with Marion and the consultant did result in me trying on outfits in changing rooms. Fortunately with a woman providing cover for me but with the shop staffs approval. More about those trips later.