|SHOPPING FOR THE PATRIOTIC.|
I'm not a shopping fanatic, but I do enjoy my retail therapy now and then. And, even though Jerry and I have gotten rid of just about everything in preparation for our move to Spain — NOW JUST FOUR WEEKS AWAY — there are still things I need. Like socks and underwear. Some new black, designer-chic T-shirts. A gift for our friends' 7-year-old daughter here in Minneapolis. AA batteries for Jerry's laptop mouse.
|ONE OF THE CALMER SPACES I PASSED THROUGH.|
I had the brilliant, I thought, idea of heading over to the Mall of America yesterday afternoon to take care of all my shopping at one time. Jerry is NOT a shopper. He lasts about 10 minutes and is then bored. So, I left him back at the hotel and I drove the 10 minutes through Bloomington, Minnesota, to the mega-mall.
|I FELT LIKE I WAS INSIDE A VIDEO GAME.|
I don't know what I was thinking. I had been to the Mall of America once before. That was years ago and with Jerry. Amazingly, I was the one to reach saturation point soonest on that visit. The place is enormous, noisy, frenetic, confusing, inconvenient. Just way too big. I nearly had a panic attack that first time and was happy to leave after a couple of hours.
|THE CENTER OF THE MALL AND THE QUICKEST WAY TO CROSS IT... AND TO LOSE YOUR MIND.|
The center of the mall is a ginormous indoor amusement park. It's the quickest way to get from one side of the mall to the other. It is also to be avoided like the plague. I forgot myself and decided to cut across the amusement park only to go about 20 paces and change my mind. The long way around the mall is a better choice.
|I COULDN'T EVEN DESCRIBE THE INTERIOR "DESIGN."|
I parked by Macy's and found all the clothing items I needed. I then took a deep breath and headed into the mall itself. I lasted another half hour. I bought a belt (a pleasant salesperson and calm store), a game for Sophie the 7-year-old (a noisy, chaotic store with an annoying and yet completely unhelpful salesperson), batteries for Jerry (even that was chaos), and I made my escape. Escalators are inconveniently placed; the Up escalator always seven miles away from the Down escalator (OK, maybe I exaggerate just a tad). I suppose this is planned so you'll pass more shops while trying to reach your intended destination. So, getting from Point A to Point B is never easy. But, I managed to find my way back to Macy's, through the luggage department, and back out to my car in Parking Lot 5 West Nevada. I drove back to the hotel in rush-hour traffic and enjoyed the calm. I'm hoping that will be my absolute last ever visit to the Mall of America. People actually vacation there, staying in hotels across the street! Insane.
|THE VIEW FROM PARKING LOT 5 WEST NEVADA. MALL BUILDINGS TO THE HORIZON.|