Going to the mall with the Girl is quite unlike going with the Boy. The Boy nearly always has a specific goal in mind. He wants to go to Radio Shack, the Sports and Magic card emporium or the video game store. Maybe if there's time (his idea of time, not mine) we might look into the pet store to see if there are any new exotic pets. But that's it. An hour's visit perhaps, most of it spent looking over autographed photos of celebrated baseball players.
Going with the Girl is a whole different experience.
I have to admit upfront that I am not much of a mall person, and have moreover been casually boycotting our local mall since they banned buses from pulling into the parking lot. (Casually boycotting means I will go there if I must, because its the only place to get what I need, but I don't hang out there with my surplus cash.) The mall says the buses are hard on their parking lot, I think they are trying to upscale their image and people waiting on buses don't fit, even though some of those people are mall employees. I speak from experience, for I once worked at one of the big box anchor stores at this mall. (Another reason I am never that keen on going here.)
But we hadn't done anything special for the Girl's birthday, and she wanted to go to the mall, Moreover some birthday money from Grandma was burning a hole in her pocket.
Originally we were supposed to be going with a couple of friends from her summer academic enrichment program but we weren't able to coordinate the schedules so I picked her up Friday and headed to the nearest bus stop that would take us to the mall.
Upon arrival our first stop was the aptly named "Glitter" which is a low end Claire's Boutique offering most of their store items for a dollar each. The Girl walked out with a bracelet and earring set, 2 cards of stud earrings, and 3 single pairs of dangling earrings, one stars, one chandelier and the other feathers. She also bought her beloved mom and escort a new ring and a hair pin. All this and she was out the door for less than 10.00.
Next stop was Payless Shoes where the goal was not so much to buy a pair of shoes as it was to try on all the high heels in her size and see how tall they made her. (Being vertically challenged is a fact of life in our family.) Since she has taken pointe classes, being on high heels disturbs her not at all: "Its like demi pointe with support, mom" she has sad. She tried on half a dozen pairs, in each case measuring herself against a slatted wall to see how much taller she was. In the end she decided not to purchase any however, and we worked our way down the mall to the food court.
Here of course we had to decide on kind of food. We opted for the
I do catch one break when I go to the mall, because the Girl's asthma keeps us out of the heavily scented stores, no Victoria Secret, no department store perfume counters. That didn't keep us out of the dollar store however, and we scored some school supplies and nail polish in the colors of her new high school.
By that time we had run out of both money and time, and headed to the bus stop. We were sitting there admiring our purchases and I called attention to the tangle of bling in her bag. Immediately I received "that look" and was informed "Mom, never ever say bling. Ever. "