Tuesday, December 30, 2008

a not unusual day

I don't make New Year's Resolutions. Simply for the fact that I know I won't keep them.

I do try to find something positive in all things that happen, and am pleased when I can do that when things go wrong. Like finding an earring while looking for lost paperwork. Or meeting someone pleasant when dashing out to the store for a missing ingredient for the planned dinner.

I have annual professional dues and insurance payments that must be made before December 31st every year. And every year, I manage to not get the cheque and paperwork mailed out in time. For 14 years, I have had to drive into Toronto to go in person to make sure that these payments and signatures are date stamped as received before December 31. The fine for being late is exorbitant enough that one will move heaven and earth to be on time.

So, since I already know that I will not be on time, I have gotten it in my head that I will simply make this an enjoyable outing and a chance to wander around an area of the city I don't normally see. This year, I decided that after walking around Yonge and Eglinton since it was just past 3pm I would stop off at Yorkdale on my way home to wait out the rush hour traffic. For those who are not familiar, Yorkdale is a huge shopping mall (1.6 million sq ft and 250 stores). It is conveniently located just off the highway and has its own exit. It also has its own subway station, a GO station and a bus station.

It took me 47 minutes to find a parking space. On the upside, it was in the first row just outside one of the main entrances right at two of the stores I wanted to shop at. That would make it easier to remember which entrance I had parked at, so no interesting tale of a lost car this time. By this time I desperately needed coffee and food and sat down at the first place I found. This allowed for people watching. Lots of people watching. Lots of people with lots of bags and packages. I counted my cash and headed into the throng. Disappointed that the bookstore didn't have any of the items I was looking for I headed over to the new Crate and Barrel that I have wanted to check out since it opened in the fall. It was far better than I had expected and I was seduced by their wares and their festive items deeply discounted. But, I resisted. No need for Christmas themed tea towels, or more candles ... and where have all these people come from??

Three hours later I left with nothing.
Except a headache.

It took 15 minutes to get out of the parking lot, but the good part was the sign on the road to the highway that said "401 westbound, express and collectors moving freely".
Good. That would mean only 45 minutes more to get home.

Because, I also left the mall without finding the washrooms.


  1. That sounds like most of my visits to the mall. I buy a pretzel at Auntie Anne's, look in windows, visit a couple of shops and return home empty-handed. I really hate pawing through discount racks. Now give me a great kitchen store (like Crate & Barrel) and I'm all over it.

    Sounds like a lovely drive home, being in need of a washroom!

  2. Susan: I drove quickly.
    Yes, for someone who doesn't cook much, I love kitchen stores.

  3. i don't miss malls. i used to go there a lot when i lived in the states and i know crate and barrel, but i don't miss mall shopping. it has this hypnotizing effect on you and you loose touch with reality entombed as you are in a large building disconnected from the reality of life. my kids used to love it, but they didn't know any better. now, when my daughter is here, she loves to go downtown and shop in the cozy streets and the squares with the caf├ęs and the restaurants and all the neat shops and even get rained upon if that is the case.

  4. I have a pretty good sense of direction, but I regularly get lost in malls. I exit a shop and immediately turn the wrong way, but don't realize it till I need a bathroom and I suddenly have no idea where in the damn building I am! But I got a GPS for Christmas, so I will be taking it with me the next time I venture out to a mall. Wait - no - it wouldn't be able to access a satellite indoors. Crap. Alert the rescue teams.

  5. Malls are evil inventions, even with a map I end up getting lost within the first 10 mins and trying to find the car when it time to leave......
    I prefer going to towns with the shops lined down the street.


  6. I once experienced a man having a terrific wobbly because his car was blocked in by someone who'd cleared off. Just done a blog re peace and quiet. We had a three hour jam in Derby in the week. Is it a myth ladies like shopping more than men?
    never mind, have a happy new year.

  7. Irene: I much prefer the "pedestrian precinct" shopping that is more common in Europe as well. Crate & Barrel is brand new to Canada though, that was my main reason for going there.

  8. Pinklea: I use The Bay as my compass guide and always check to see where it is located in relation to the outside exits and streets. Then I proceed to get completely confused once I'm inside.

  9. MA: They are convenient when it is 30C outside, I must admit. But I still love walking the streets to window shop. i could do that for hours, whereas I get fed up within minutes in a mall.

    Ken: yes, it is a myth. I HATE shopping. Window shopping is a whole different activity.

  10. Thanks for stopping by Mayberry Magpie - bare though it is. I, too, have thrown treasures into the garbage. Oh, what I would give to not be absent-minded.

    By the way, I'm making a new year's resolution -- to back up my computer!

  11. I recently went to Sephora, the line up was out the door, and shortly after I saw that.So was I.I do not like shopping in crowds, and prefer the littler shops .

  12. Tanya: the problem I find with such lovely shops as Sephora, WilliamsSonoma, etc. is that I cannot justify spoending the money asked for their lovely wares and then I get depressed


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