Peripheral Man Episode 2
Gary reluctantly agreed to go with his fiancée shopping. It wouldn't have been so bad except for the fact that the day she wanted him to go shopping with him was December 23rd. All retail locations were overwhelmed; the strip malls were crazy with no parking spots to be had, the shopping malls were so crowded people were waiting simply to go up an escalator and the department stores, even with additional temporary staff, had queues at the cashier stations that went past the entrance to the store.
So off they went to the Fairview Springs mall and she had it in her head to do all of the Christmas shopping that she kept putting off until then. She found little booties for two of her young cousins, DS games for the boys and a shiny new watch for her sister. She found a casual dress she figured her mom would love and bought the Samsung Galaxy 7.7 for her dad. Gary followed her along and helped her carry the stuff she was buying. She would ask him occasionally for his input and would occasionally even listen. They stopped at one point to get themselves some Starbucks, waited ten minutes to get a table and then Gary took this opportunity to sit back and relax for a little while.
"You've done a great job in getting all of this stuff", Gary mused.
"Well, it helps when I know what it is I want to buy - it is so much easier to find things that way, I don't have to spend so much time thinking about what I need to get, though it is fun to see all of the things out there that are available."
"How much more do you figure there is?" Gary asked.
"I think only two or three more - if you'd like, you can stay here and nurse your coffee while I go and complete the shopping..."
"How about instead I carry all of this stuff out to the car and then I'll come back in to hook up with you wherever you are?"
"Sure, see you soon." she finished.
So she went off to the next store while Gary finished his coffee. He wouldn't have a free hand to carry the coffee and carry all of the bags and boxes she bought. While sitting there Gary looked at all of the passersby, some of them overloaded like he was, others hurrying because they were just starting. It amazed Gary that so much activity could be happening here, and that it was like this in many places all over the world.
It was time to get up and head to the car and as he approached the exit doorway of the mall he started to think about how he would manage to get the door open while he was so encumbered by the boxes and bags he was carrying. Just as he got to the door and was about to put some stuff down to get the door open Peripheral Man appeared to hold the door open for him. Gary passed through with ease, said 'thanks!' and continued on to his car.