Last night I unwillingly went to the mall, AGAIN, in another attempt to finish my Christmas shopping. I had a loose list in my head of what I still needed, but I tend to lose it with oversensory shopping overload -- once I get INTO the mall, I promptly forget why I'm there. So I wander around, and eventually little glimmers of purpose come back to me. But it sometimes takes a while. So after I'd been wandering about an hour, and had even managed to buy some stuff, I was in phase 2 of my aimless wandering when I ran into my friend Anita, coming out of The Limited. This was kind of funny because before I had left work, I had moaned to her how I had to go to the mall, and she was saying she thought she could avoid it. So here we were an hour later, in the large thriving metropolis of Austin, during the craziest time of the year to even be at the mall, bumping into each other outside the Limited. We were glad and somewhat relieved to see each other. She had actually called my cell phone, but I hadn't heard it in the din of Xmas joy at Barton Creek mall. We quickly agreed to go eat somewhere (drink wine) before continuing the hellish conquest.
We had a nice dinner (and wine) and chatted, and I was feeling a lot better (with the wine) about being at the mall. It's always nice to be with a friend in these stressful situations. And to drink wine. So as we prepared to continue the hunt, I was expressing how I'd like to find that store Brookstone -- the Sharper Image knockoff. I wanted to see if they had something cool for my dad. Anita and I wandered like champs, stopping at two different mall maps and realizing there wasn't a Brookstone at this mall, dammit. So we switched missions and went to Pottery Barn for some other stuff. As we emerged from the comfy depths of Pottery Barn, with visions of hip rugs and silky curtains swirling in our heads, I looked up and my breath caught in my throat. I grabbed Anita's arm and choked out "OH MY GOD-- LOOK." And there we stood, in the glow of the Brookstone that happened to be DIRECTLY ACROSS THE WAY from the Pottery Barn. I swear it hadn't been there when we went in. We were both awestruck. Anita, without skipping a beat, said in serious awe, "It's a Christmas Miracle."
And so it was.