Today, for some unknown reason, I headed into what I know to be one of my very own, personal hells. The shopping mall.
I’ve been overworked and under inspired for a couple of weeks, so I thought that if I just got out, maybe my mood would pick up.
Oh, I’m soooo funny.
The first mall we went to was out of the one-and-only Christmas present that I had yet to purchase. It was also out of my favourite perfume, which I had decided to buy myself because, well, it’s one of my daily indulgences.
Anyway, off we went to mall number two, the Mecca-of-Malls to find what I had set out for.
Parking. Yah, it’s a little like survival of the fittest among the most ruthless and uncaring pack on the planet; consumer-driven humans.
As I backed my little car in to a parking spot, two more cars came at either side as if they were heat seeking missiles. Walking thought the parking lot, a little silver sports car swerved to miss hitting us, and then the passenger swung open her door and hit me in the legs.
I was officially in a bad mood. Worse than when I started out.
We found the one gift we still needed and were tempted to stop for a lazy meal in the food court. It was a sea of weary shoppers stuffing themselves while stuffed together at cramped tables, bags and coats and little kids falling all over.
No one looked happy. Not one.
After a quick look at the food court scene, we decided to skip a quick meal and find somewhere we could relax. The other thought that went through our heads was that shopping malls all decked out for the holidays with wall to wall people who celebrate Christmas are likely not the safest place any more. You know, with terrorists going on shooting sprees.
I was careful to be friendly, patient and wish every cashier a very merry Christmas. I was also very careful to get in and out as quickly as possible given that shopping malls are not my idea of merry.
People from the entrance of the parking lot to the heart of the materialistic mecca looked strained. There didn’t seem to be any peace, joy or love happening.
This reinforced my year’s old tradition of not shopping in December, keeping gifts to a minimum and time with loved-ones at a maximum.
I have to admit that I enjoyed watching my son carefully choose his gift for his girlfriend. I liked the flavoured coffee I picked up and I enjoyed the feeling of not needing or wanting much.
Tonight with my feet up, the Christmas tree lights twinkling, and the garland on the mantle I’m feeling more Christmasy than I have in a while, satisfied with who I am and what I have. Maybe I needed a little Christmas Mall-hell to appreciate the woman I’ve become.