The Longest Day

December 14, 2011
Dodging cars, we navigate our way through the mall parking lot, scavenging for a space. The sun hasn’t risen yet, which makes it difficult to see out the car windows. We had set our alarms for 5am, thinking that would allow us the time to arrive before the crowds. Some might call us crazy, but it is hard to tell, as a current of excitement ripples through the car. Hearts pound with anticipation as we finally find a place to park. We practically tumble out of the car, toppling over each other. Heading to the mall entrance, we stop short as we see hundreds of people packed around the entrance. We knew this mission would be a challenge and we assumed there would be masses of people, but we never expected it to be this bad. Sure, the TV’s and radios encourage you to participate in this once a year extravaganza, but do we really have what it takes; will we be able to succeed this shopping adventure?
Patiently waiting behind the huge mob of people, is a suitable opportunity to check our lists and devise a shopping strategy. An hour later, with heads throbbing from lack of sleep, frustrated and tired, a hush falls over the crowd, as the doors suddenly open. Just like waves in an ocean, we were being carried with the tide of people, through the grand entry. All needs to push and shove were lost, once finally inside. With room to move, the swarm rushes in all directions. Some people are interested in the latest high tech gadgets and games, some are looking to bring their child the latest and greatest toy, and some just want the perfect sweater. According to the plan, our group will split up and proceed to the different corners of the mall, seeking out the superb holiday sales.
Store after store, we check items off our list. Feeling privileged to be one of the first to obtain the latest coveted trends for our friends and families. Wondering how shopping was ever managed before texting, we decide to reconvene at the food court. Hours have passed and starvation has weakened us, requiring a 15 minute break to re-fuel. Exchanging the day’s experiences and sharing the best places to find the best deals, was an added bonus to the break. After rummaging around in each other’s bags, and a speedy trip to the car to deposit our great finds, we return in to finish what we started.
Striving to be as energetic and focused as we were in the morning is difficult; it has already been a long day. The competition has been fierce, moods and temperaments of the customers have bordered on outrage, and the store employees are showing signs of extreme fatigue. By days end, our arms are loaded once again with bags, our lists have been checked off, and we are satisfied with our purchases. Fulfilled with a sense of pride in having conquered Black Friday, we head back home.
By Rachel Faulds





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