Waiting, hoping, anticipation. Emotions clearly shown on the face of a child I saw at Walmart.
I don't usually go to Walmart. In fact, I had just bragged to some friends that I had almost never been in 2009. I must have sounded a bit too self-righteous, because the very next day I just had to go to the giant, crowded retail store, needing to buy some item that I really couldn't get anywhere else any more. Because of the large department store chains many of the small, helpful, locally-owned stores could no longer compete. Very few remain open though I prefer to shop in them. I like to keep my money going to someone who lives in my community, buys their cars, clothes & other stuff nearby, and remembers me when I walk in. Someone who has time to talk about their children or mine. It is less stressful to me.
I went to Walmart 3 times last week. It was there that I watched the child as her mother and father pulled her and her younger brother through the aisles of Christmas ornaments, lights and gift tags. The child kept talking to herself or perhaps to an friend that only she could see. I couldn't hear the words, but I could heard the excitement as she spoke. She kept getting distracted by the great assortment of items on the racks, stopping to touch many. Her parents did not approve of her dawdling. They rightfully wanted their child close by so they could keep an eye on her nad keep her safe. In a small store, she probably could have wandered around at will without anyone worrying. I used to lie down under the dresses when my mom shopped or sit in front of the mirror, the three-sided ones where you could see yourself to infinity if you stood at just the right spot.
I like to stay home during December when the streets are full of stressed-out drivers. Drivers who forgot where they were going and at the last minute have to turn left from the wrong lane, or are so anxious to get someplace, that they cut across mall lanes to quickly grab a parking space. It is not very peaceful in town during December.