There are quite wide cultural distances between we Aussies, and Americans. Things we say and do and of course due to the huge population in the USA, everything is BIG.
Sometimes that is a little daunting for the average Aussie tourist.
I wrote this a while ago but it’s still relevant today and it’s part of my book of memories.
Mall of America…..
I arrived at 9.00 am. There was the smell of freshly brewed coffee, classical music played invisibly and as I walked I was caught up in the slip stream of women doing the “Mall crawl” an exercise program for those who wish to become fit.
However the participants were mostly middle aged women in traditional uniform of denims, jumpers (a jumper is an all in one shift) and white sneakers.
I have a day to spare and I was treading the halls of the Mall of America.
Young Mom’s with infants in prams jostle for position on the floor. I can imagine the excitement of the children as they whiz past dozens of large snoopy’s decorated in a myriad of styles.
9.30 And the lights rise with theatrical appeal and the music rises to a crescendo.
The chorus of security doors clang and clatter as they roll upwards anticipating the spending of the daily dollar.
Shop assistants check their appearance and sip coffee from very large insulated mugs.By 10.00 the mall is a buzz with music, conversation and color.
Children clasping their parent’s hands strain to see the latest adventure ride.
I walk past stores selling absolutely everything….however my priority was to find a store where I could purchase a sim card for my telephone.
After a few unsuccessful queries I find that it is only possible to purchase a sim card for MN.
“Next month we’ll be national”.
OK that’s not much good to me…. But I did get the information.
There is a store for tall people….. (If I wore the pants I wouldn’t need any other clothes.
They would come right over my head)
A store for vertically challenged folk.
A store to feed the pets in your yard.
And video’s of how to keep the squirrels out of your birdseed.
Book stores, clothes stores for cowboys, the elderly, infants, mountaineering and even something called big dogs……!!!!
At about 12.00 the body is in need of nourishment … and so I decide to visit Ruby Tuesday and take advantage of their chicken wings….. $5.00 for 10…. Or $8.00 for 20…. Let’s stick with the 10…. And of course a diet coke.
However, it’s not that easy.
Introduce yourself as Pam to the gal on the podium in the doorway.
“There’s a 10 to 15 minute wait Ma’am, we’ll call you when your table is ready”
15, 20 mins go by and I watch the parade of families anxiously awaiting their turn.
“Pam for one” he calls over the loud speaker.
The waitress introduces herself with professional friendliness.
How much is real one can’t tell, but it’s pleasant. I have time to look around the restaurant.
It’s buzzing with noise, bright tiffany lights glow just above my head and the dark green walls are garnished with artefacts such as children’s scooters, old posters and the ever present antique coke posters. The pressed tin ceiling is painted black and reflects bright colors of the low slung lights.
Next to me were 6 ladies of ample proportion, tucking in to fries and burgers and flirting with Jo the waiter with the excuse that “Maureen was turning 60”. There was raucous laughter over the most trivial events and the noise got louder and louder.
Photos with Jo and I averted my eyes as she stroked his back.
It was a bit hard as I was just about a foot from the event. But gee they were enjoying themselves, however, I can’t image that my groups would act in the same manner !
Lunch was a messy affair after eating chicken wings. I attended to the face and fingers with gusto using the wet tissue I was given. I applied the lipstick and ventured forth into the body of the mall…. I believe it is the biggest shopping centre in the Northern Hemisphere. Plane loads of folk come from all over the world to visit.I had the luxury of being able to people watch, window shop and take photos for many hours before connecting with the shuttle back to the hotel…..