Shopping

You must’ve been wondering why I chose such a sombre topic for the other day. Well, I decided that I’d just take a different random topic for every post.
This post’s topic is… hmm, what about a slightly cheesy topic?
I’ll describe in great detail how tiresome a shopping trip with my mother can get.
The following article is 90% truth and 10% exaggeration. 😀

Every single year, between June 15 and the day we leave for our summer vacations, my mother begins these trips to shopping malls and other such nefarious places to stock up on colognes, chocolates and clothes. The period of time dedicated to the latter – usually a period of four or five days – is one much dreaded by me. Shopping for clothes doesn’t seem all that terrifying in retrospect, but things are another matter altogether when you’re shopping for clothes with my mother.
I have no particular animosity for clothes stores, it’s just that shopping there is so painfully boring, and also because all the dust there makes me sneeze until my nose threatens to fall off altogether. I much prefer wandering aimlessly in the electronics area with my father. At least I won’t be sneezing like a cuckoo clock at twelve!
Recently (yesterday, to be precise), my mother dragged me along with her to one of her favorite sari stores. My clothes-shopping was over and done with (phew!). Then what did she need me for? I’d asked her if I could stay at home instead, and perhaps even blow up some aliens on the computer, but the answer was pretty obvious: “No.”
I wasn’t allowed to bring my Game Boy along either. Apparently, she was yanking me along to help her choose. At first I thought she was kidding, for I’ve got the fashion sense of the average hamster. I tried to explain this concept to my mother but she dragged me there anyways.
As I had (correctly) predicted, this trip was by far the most boring shopping trip I’d had that year. I mean, how exciting is loping mindlessly after your mother while she piled endless clothes into the trolley? I tried my best not to sneeze, because every time I did so, all the salespeople would jump a mile into the air and stare at me as if I’d let an atom bomb go off in a corner of the room. Apparently, the last time they hoovered the store was in 2003. I entertained myself with a very old stick of bubble-gum I found in my jeans pocket. The expiry date had been rubbed off somehow, and it smelt very strongly of Downy.
After much picking, pondering and rejecting (I should say ‘much’, my mother carried on for well over two hours! The very thought of all the aliens I could have blown apart during this time made my nose itch – or perhaps it was all the dust), my mother narrowed her choices down to two ensembles. Then she asked long-suffering me which sari looked better on her: the blue one with the red dots, or the red one with the blue dots?
Perfect person to ask. I thought both of them looked equally hideous, but I couldn’t say that, could I? Besides, I felt a particularly explosive sneeze coming on, so I kept my mouth shut. Mistaking my silence for admiration (read as distaste, in my case) of the two saris, my mother decided that she must have both. And, to tell you the truth, my dad wasn’t particularly chuffed with that decision. The bill came to a jaw-slacking, eye-popping (in my father’s case, of course) one grand. How could something so small be so annoying? But he paid up.
The good thing about tagging along on these sneeze-trigger shopping trips is that my mother would almost always leave me in peace afterwards. And they are always mildly educative (in a manner of speaking). I’d never realized how many extremely rude noises you could make with a stick of bubblegum and a virtually nonexistent knowledge of how to blow bubbles.
Would she leave me in peace this time too? I think so. I hope so. I kept my fingers crossed for luck.
Wait a minute – are we going shopping today too?
“Mom! Are we going shopping today as well?”
“Yes… to get your sister’s clothes.” More clothes? Just great.
That is how it happened, an eyewitness account. And, besides, a sari is a colorful patterned article of clothing traditionally worn by women from the Indian Subcontinent. My mother is very observant of traditions, unlike me, who has taken a pledge never to observe traditions unless compelled. And a very good way of doing that is to hide my iPod.

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~ by alexandraburton on March 31, 2010.

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