Wednesday, December 18, 2002

I started my holidays yesterday, the day was a bit of a blur. I had to go into the office for a few hours in the morning. The time flew by and I managed to get everything pressing off of my desk and the rest of it is now ready to be tackled in the new year.

I spent the afternoon in the mall. I hate the mall. The mall is generally a place that I try to avoid at all costs. I much prefer to shop online or via mail order, or, if I have to go to the mall, I like to go in, get what I need and get back out as soon as I possibily can. Over the past couple of years, we have really cut back on the number of gifts and the amount of money we spend on the holidays. I just don't feel that it is necessary to overspend anymore (yes, I used to be very guilty of this in the past) so we have a small list of folks who we give gifts to and I try to be as practical (with some fun thrown in) as I possibily can be. Unfortunately, although I have a small list, I wasn't sure what I was going to get for some of the people on our list. The mall was not insanely busy but it was busy enough. I also was dressed completely inappropriately for the day as well.

When we woke up yesterday morning, it was like minue 17 outside so I wore a turtle neck and a heavy sweater to work. By the time I got to the mall though, the sun was out and it had really warmed up a lot. I was so warm in the mall, and I'm still coughing and suffering a bit with this stupid head cold that I've had so, after about an hour of shopping, I was about ready to pass out. I didn't though, I just found a bench in the middle of the madness and checked my list (and found a cough drop). I asked a woman on the cash in one of the stores how they do it, work in the heat and the dryness. She confessed that they all find it really hard and that they drink gallons of water and suck on a lot of mints to try and keep themselves from choking on dust.

While I was sitting there, my aunt and uncle walked by. They're retired and apparently, for fun, they walk around the mall on a regular basis (they were just there for a walk yesterday - they had been there on Monday as well). I can think of about five million other things that I would rather do for exercise instead of walking around amongst a bunch of over-perfumed, big-haired, high-maintenance, whiney-mall-women with their screaming, crying, whining monsters (errr, children). I also don't understand how you can "exercise" in an environment that is completely lacking any oxygen.

Anyway, I did get the majority of my shopping finished. When Mark finished work, we went out to Walmart to pick up some bird seed for our new feeder and some rock salt (we're supposed to get some freezing rain tomorrow) and a couple of other odds and ends. The really strange thing was that it was not very busy out there either. I don't know whether everyone is waiting until the weekend to shop or maybe everyone is just shopping less or something. It struck me as odd anyway. We did have an interesting run in with this cow while we were at Walmart. We were walking into the store and noticed that this stupid woman in a van was parking her vehicle in the fire route, next to the handicapped spaces. I know that when there is some snow on the ground it is tough to see the lines on the parking lots and this makes some folks just park willy-nilly anywhere but this was so obvious. She was parked right next to a huge sign that said "tow-away zone / fire route / no parking." She was getting out of her vehicle as we passed by and I called out to her that she was parked illegally (it's Christmas time, I didn't want to see her get towed). She gives me a digusted look and says "I'm just doing what everyone else always does." Mark turns to her and says, "Oh, well, if EVERYONE does something illegal that may endanger the folks in the store I guess It's ALRIGHT then." I walked up to the customer service folks when we got into the store to report her for blocking the fire route and she was right behind me, yelling (again) that she wasn't doing anything that everyone else was doing. I'm not sure what happened after that because we walked away from her, I hope she got towed, she sure deserved it.

This morning our car is in the shop getting a new muffler, allignment, front right tire...and some other I'm just poking around the house getting a few things done while I wait to hear back from them. When I get the car back this afternoon, I'm going to do some errands (banking, post office) and hopefully completely finish up. We're taking Mark's dad for groceries tonight so we won't have to deal with that on the weekend (I hope to not have to go anywhere near the stores on the weekend - at least not for anything big). We're going to try to stock up for the next 10 days or so. I don't know what it is about the holidays that just make me want to hibernate. Too much humanity I suspect.

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