During my childhood I read and re-read a fairy story by Hans Christian Anderson. It was called The Swineherd.
Wikipedia summarizes the story goes like this:
A poor prince wants to marry the Emperor's daughter and sends her two beautiful gifts, a nightingale and a rose. The princess rejects the humble gifts because they're real and natural, rather than artificial. The prince then disguises himself and applies for the position of swineherd at the palace. Once on the job, he creates a musical pot. The princess slogs through the mud to the swineherd's hut and pays ten kisses for the pot. When the swineherd follows the pot with the creation of a musical rattle, she pays one hundred kisses for it. The Emperor, disgusted that his daughter would kiss a swineherd for a toy, casts her out. The prince then washes his face, dons his royal raiment, and spurns the princess as her father did. The princess is left outside the palace door singing dolefully.
That princess lost the opportunity to marry a beautiful prince because of her shallow consumerist values. She couldn’t appreciate the power of a flawless rose or lovely birdsong. She preferred the glitziness of an expensive tacky toy.
Personally I would much rather go for a walk in a national park than go shopping in an airconditioned shopping mall - even at sale time. Give me flowers and birds any time over musical pots and rattles.
Image by Hans Holbien the Younger.
Design for a stained glass window with swinherd. c. 1518/19.