After shopping for several hours today, I felt myself in need of a rest for my feet and legs. I decided to employ one of my mother’s favorite respites. She would say:
Let’s get a cold drink.
As a child, I dreaded hearing her say those words for it meant we would be headed to Walgreen’s where we would occupy a table for the better part of an hour. As you may remember, we were sometimes allowed to order food (the famous bar-b-que sandwich); however, on most occasions, we were restricted to a small coke which we were supposed to make last for the pre-determined hour.
Well, as you already know, my sister Lindy and I were never very successful at following orders and this time was no exception. We would slurp down the tiny drinks and then begin saying:
Aren’t you ready to move on?
Since the purpose of the stopping was really not to consume liquid refreshment, but rather to rest the weary bones of our mother, she was not amused. Mother would begin bellowing:
Can’t you kids let me drink my iced tea in peace?
Of course. the answer to that was “No,” but we knew better than to voice it.
Finally, in preparation for leaving Walgreen’s, my mother would begin rustling the packages she had picked up along the way. She always had three or four sacks and they always made the same annoying sounds as she began to organize her belongings. To this day, Lindy cannot abide the sounds of paper bags rubbing against each other and being crushed by a shopper’s hand.
At last we were free to race down the mezzanine steps and burst out to the fresh air of Water Street. Lindy and I both considered the trip to Walgreen’s pure torture.
Today, on the other hand, I could not wait to make my way to the Food Court of my local mall. I ordered a diet Pepsi and settled myself and my three large bags at a table. I sat there sipping my drink and realizing that sometimes my mother had some pretty good ideas. Getting a cold drink was definitely one of them.