It’s around this time of the year that I remember why I absolutely loathe the rush of Christmas. We had to go to the Mall with Matt’s family to pick him up for lunch. We were seven adults and four toddlers. Just looking for parking was enough to give me a panic attack. I felt angina setting into my chest when I considered the reality that we may not find anything close enough to walk outside in sub arctic temperatures with two little children. I finally found a spot and just as I was getting ready to turn off the key I realized the poor shlub in front of me had his Toyota Camry completely boxed in. I pulled out of the spot so as not to add more strain on his holiday fun but I was a bit appalled by how many folks just boxed a car in to create a parking space. This time of the year brings out the gangster in the most Caucasian individual of middle America. People will stop at nothing to shop for stupid hand stuffed teddy bears for Johnny and ugly slippers for mom.
After we were inside next was the child play area. This is where parents go to regain their composure after dragging a few unhappy and exhausted toddlers around the mall. But the parents are wrong, this is not the place to regain sanity; it’s the place where your heart is tested as you watch Bubba the chap lipped six year old push your kid around the plastic shoe shaped slide while Bubba’s raspy parents just smile at his ‘cute’ aggressiveness. So you stay and appease your children and endure the ‘fun zone’.
After you’ve had your fill of the friggin’ mall you make your way out to the car park again, praying that no one wearing a santa hat has boxed your car in, trapping you and your kids inside your Geo Prism in weather that has dipped into the negative digits with even more frigid wind chill. Now you have to wait and wait and wait for the cars to move, to turn into traffic and lollygag at 1.7 mph, looking for a place to park outside of Penny’s. !@#$
So now you’re out! You have survived the mall, again. Another year. It’s over after the 25th. No one will cut in line in front of you, race to take your parking spot or give you the stink eye if your kid screams as he sits on Santa’s lap. It’s the most wonderful time of the year. The most agitated time where spirits come together to spend, buy and grab. God bless us, everyone!