Sunday, December 30, 2012
My right knee and right hip decided to abandon me in unison today, and I found walking very painful. Not just difficult, painful, and anyone watching me walk could see I was having trouble. (I'm really glad I got that hip MRI. I'm actually hoping it will show that there is something wrong with my hip. You can replace hips. If it is referred pain from my degenerating spine, it will push me to make a decision about back surgery. That, however, is not directly relevant to this story.)
We arrived at the mall around 2:00 - not the wisest decision - but we were both busy in the morning (the safe time to go). The parking lot was already a contest, so my friend Kara dropped me off at the Nordstrom door and found a parking space. How did she do it? She saw a man walking toward his car and offered to give him a lift if she could have his parking space. Genius! I would have been looking for a suitable date, but she's happily married.
Kara met me at the Bobbi Brown counter, as we had arranged, where I was enjoying a touch-up by Vernon. Diron was at lunch. One of the two new Cheek Stains I thought were being held for me was already sold out, so we walked (limped?) down to Bloomies. I had to stop to get a pinaberry smoothie. Kara had iced tea. We were fortified. I got my Cheek Stain at Bloomingdale's. Kara checked out the Louis Vuitton boutique, where the most impressive sighting was a tall, model-thin, gorgeous blonde speaking Russian. She gave the whole place cachet.
Have you noticed that Bloomies gives you a choice of receiving your receipt via e-mail? I think that's terribly cool. I always lose track of receipts, but I never lose an e-mail.
The long walk from there down to Macy's, where we both had to return gifts that weren't given, was excruciating. Between my knee and hip, I was not up for dodging children running amok, rude people who had to walk five abreast, people who could not keep their distance (is a foot too much to ask?), and those who don't understand the keep-to-the-right "rule." By the time we got to Macy's, I thought I might need a stretcher to get back to the car. While I waited for Kara to return her purchases, I browsed the beauty department (of course). Macy's had set up mid-aisle displays that were plexiglass, impeding foot traffic around them and leaving a two-foot space between the displays and the counters. I was already in the space when a large, burly, and definitely rude man barged past me. What was I to do? Fall into the Clinique counter? I turned to my side, trying to avoid a chest to chest confrontation, but he kept coming. I must have had a snarl on my face because his polite companion (another man) stepped aside after seeing what his friend had done to me and waiting the two seconds for me to pass. This event surpassed all the times men have run over me "boarding" as I tried to get off an elevator. Chivalry? It's dead. Manners?
At least I had time to sit, recompose, and peruse the Dior Spring Collection before we headed back to Nordies. It was a slow walk, but anyone who didn't like it could go around us. I was walking as fast as I could.
Nordstrom should have been an oasis compared to the mall's "public areas," but it also was very crowded. The store is having its extravaganza men's sale, so the floor was busy. At least I could sit at Bobbi Brown and enjoy Diron's company for awhile. Kara and I also had a lovely late lunch at the café on the first floor. Not only sitting with a good friend, but also having a beer improved my mood. I used to love to shop! What has become of my hobby?
As we left for the car, Kara kindly left me at the door to walk the quarter mile to get her car. I watched people coming and going and was appalled. OK, now I know I'm too old - or something. I people watched. The get-ups on some of the teens were astounding. They looked like streetwalkers. Who let them leave home with those skin-tight clothes, like leggings with nothing to cover their posteriors? Why do teenaged boys need to waste the energy to pop the "disabled doors" to leave the store? Did no one teach them that we are supposed to conserve energy? Why did I feel my feet were in danger of being trampled as I sat and waited? I moved, walking out to the drive where Kara and I were to meet. From there, I watched the chaos in the parking lot. Cars everywhere, gridlocked, their owners looking for a parking space - any space - holding up all the cars behind them. One cowboy driving a large pick-up truck was notable. He looked like a character on one of those redneck shows that seem to have become popular. Somehow he turned that truck around in the middle of a drive lane, hindering traffic in all directions because he decided, I guess, that his chances of parking were better elsewhere. That left me wondering why the mall doesn't have the farthest sections reserved for trucks that don't belong in spaces measured out for cars.
It felt a lot better after writing all that out. Have you ever felt the same way? Did you brave a mall this week? Was everyone polite, well-behaved, and in the holiday spirit?
I found these photos today at workchic.com, where a shopper had similar experiences, perhaps without the pain. You can find her post at this link, explaining why she does all her shopping online now. I may be headed that way.