This past weekend Middle Dude and I spent four hours in the mall. The dude has stamina! What’s more impressive is that neither one of us complained — not once! We probably could have spent another hour there, too. If I had either of my other two boys with me, our mall visit never would have been that long. We probably would have been out of there in under an hour.
My mom and I shop together all the time. She calls our trips, “restoring the economy.” I call them fun. Whether we go to the outlet stores, the mall, or wander the streets of a prime shopping community, we spend hours going in and out of stores. Sometimes we have great success and come home with bags of stuff. Other times, we aren’t as lucky, but the outing is still satisfying and always makes for good mom-daughter bonding time.
After my third son was born, I thought to myself, “I love having three boys, but who will go shopping with me if I don’t have a daughter?” I mourned that I may not be able to share those shopping sprees that I so love with my mom, with a child of my own. Fortunately, I may have been wrong.
Our goal for the mall trip was mainly the Apple Store. Aside from checking out the new iPad mini and a laptop, I thought I should look into the iPhone 5 since I was due for an upgrade. Middle Dude, as some of you may recall after reading this post, cracked the glass on his iPhone 4 a few months back. Originally, we had planned to make him pay for replacement of the glass and he was willing to do that. However, what we soon discovered was he didn’t mind using a cracked iPhone and so we let him be for a while, although I was concerned he might cut himself on the shattered glass. Once I realized I was due for an upgrade, the lightbulb went off and I thought I’d get the new “5” and transfer Middle Dude’s number to my old “4.” So, we were both quite motivated to go to the Apple Store and make this happen.
We immediately received help from one of the Apple “geniuses.” I have always found most of the employees incredibly knowledgeable, but this guy was one of the top geniuses in my book. He set up my new phone first and then worked with us on setting up my old phone for Middle Dude to take over. It took a while, a long, long while because there were all kinds of issues with my old phone. Most of the time, I was working one-on-one with the Apple guy so Middle Dude was forced to listen or wait or find his own fun, which he did. I’d glance over at him every so often and he’d either be fiddling with an iPad or listening to music through various headphones. My other two boys would have been lunatics begging to leave the store, but not Middle Dude. He was content as could be. I finally finished working with the Apple guy — an hour and a half later. I figured Middle Dude would be dragging me out of the store or begging to use his now un-cracked iPhone. But, no. He turns to me and says, “We should buy something here for Dad.”
Huh? Are you sure you’re my kid? I thought.
I stopped walking, my mouth agape, and I replied, “oh, that’s so sweet you to think of Dad.”
And then I gave him a wicked smile and said, “But today’s all about you and me buddy, so let’s go!”
We both laughed and high-fived each other, appreciating our mutual sense of humor.
In all seriousness, I was proud of Middle Dude to think of someone else, after indulging ourselves in the mall for a few hours. We didn’t buy much more that day, but I did come away very assured that I will always have a shopping buddy for life. And that’s more important to me than any iPhone, new clothes, or pair of shoes, will ever be.