Tuesday 18 November 2014

Muslim Heaven

I’m not much of a shopper, which is kind of odd because my horoscope says that people born under my sign like to have the very best of everything. It’s possible, just possible that telling fortunes and predicting a person’s fate from the location of celestial bodies may not be as accurate as I once thought. I do shop, but I don’t like to spend money which kind of puts a crimp into the whole shopping thing.

It is usually around this time of year that I will venture to a few of the larger shopping malls in our city. I particularly like Chinook Mall, but my wife just hates it for some reason. Needless to say, I am rarely at Chinook Mall. I make do with Southcentre Mall, Cross Iron Mills and Market Mall which have pretty much everything a person who avoids shopping needs. Once every two or ten years, I will find myself shopping downtown in the maze of shops created by our “Plus 15” walkway system. You can get all around the downtown without once going outside. There was a movie about the Plus 15 system called “Waydowntown, where several guys tried to stay inside longer than everyone else.

Whenever I find myself at these big malls I generally will get lost either in the parking lot or inside. I don’t know why, but I think that the malls are just a big circle and if you just keep walking you will eventually get back to where you started. I can tell you for a fact that this is not true. Even if it were, you would have to remember exactly where you came into the mall from the parking lot. I make a point of noting the stores where I enter the mall, but by the time I have been walking for an hour or so, I have no idea what stores I noted. Most of the time I have Louise with me, and between the two of us, we can figure out where the car is parked eventually.

Years ago a buddy of mine and I decided to do a road trip to Quebec City to visit his French speaking cousins. Neither he nor I had a car, but we had money so we rented a white van for our trip. Our rational was that we could save time by taking turns sleeping in the back of the van. It probably worked, but I can’t remember, as most of the trip was made in a smoky haze. Just outside of Montreal, we had the munchies so we pulled into a mall. We locked the van and walked into the mall. It was really cool, all of the stores were made to look like shops in an old European village. What a great place to wander around in!

All good things come to an end and we still had miles to go before getting to Quebec City. Normally, I have trouble finding the mall entrance I came in by, but this time neither of us could find any exit from the mall at all. Everything looked like a European village and it seems that once you enter a European village, you can never leave. After asking several people (the first three only spoke French), we finally found a way out of the mall.

That left two stoned guys looking over a sea of vehicles in probably the largest parking lot I had ever seen. We were looking for a rental vehicle that neither of us knew at all. We figured that we would space ourselves twenty yards apart and check every white van in the lot. You would be surprised how many white vans were in that parking lot. It took over an hour, but we did find the van, but we were hungry again. We decided that we would look for a place once we got out of the parking lot. I can’t remember what happened after that, I can only assume we “celebrated” finding the van by getting more confused than ever.

We must have made it to the cousin’s place because I remember waking up to a beautiful girl blowing smoke in my face. Well, either that or I had died and found my way to Muslim Heaven. But, that’s a story for another time…  

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