One place I try to avoid for obvious reasons such as noise and general mayhem created by such places are shopping malls. Sometimes, however, shopping malls can be a great source of entertainment!
A Stream of Yellow.
“Scintillate your senses.” The girl behind the make-shift perfumery stall proffered gleaming bottles of scents to shoppers. The shoppers, clutching bags or clenching cell phones to their ears or tugging quarrelsome children, surged past. They didn’t pause. They didn’t glance at Molly-Rose or her wares.
Strains of orchestral notes from the home-ware store feebly competed with raucous rock music booming from the sports store. A red-faced infant howled from its stroller. The infant’s mother frantically searched in the folds of blankets. Harried shoppers stepped around her and the stroller, scowling, sighing, glaring.
“Got it,” the mother triumphantly held a small item aloft, relief on her face. As she popped the pacifier into the child’s mouth, she caught Molly-Roses eye. The girl hopefully waggled a scent bottle towards the mother. The mother smiled apologetically and joined the throng.
“Nail polish, lipsticks, mascara, discounts today only.” Molly-Rose, desperate to make at least one sale on her first day, fluttered her gleaming purple-bloom polished finger-nails, smiled her shiny ruby-rose lipstick-smile and fluttered her mid-night blue mascara lashes.
A woman and a small boy in T-shirt and shorts cautiously approached the stall. Molly-Rose flashed her shiny smile. The woman, picking up a bottle, unscrewed the lid.
“Dab it on the paper.” Molly-Rose offered the woman a strip of paper. The woman sniffed, wrinkled her nose.
“Maybe this one,” the girl offered another bottle.
“Mum,” the boy tugged his mother’s sleeve. “I need to go,” he whined, jiggling from foot to foot.
Ignoring her son, the woman picked up bottle after bottle, dabbed the paper, sniffed, returned the bottle and moved to the next one.
The boy jiggle-danced on his crossed-over legs. “Mummmm. I really, really need to go.”
With dismay at the thought of losing her only possible customer, Molly-Rose extracted a lolly-pop from her pocket and lent towards the small boy. A look of alarm clouded his face. He cast his eyes towards the floor. Molly-Rose looked at the floor. She looked at the stream of yellow urine running down the boy’s legs, puddling on the floor.
The mother and the boy hurried away.
A large red-haired woman in spindly high-heels, cut across the stream of shoppers towards the stall. “Do you happen to have… ” then with a whoosh, the woman slid. She wobbled, flung her arms wide and landed spread-eagled on the floor.
People paused. Stopped. Pointed. Giggled and continued on.
“Isn’t that Zelda Merryweather, the mayor’s wife?” A shopper, munching on a salad roll, nudged her friend. Thick mayonnaise oozed from the roll.
As she struggled to upright herself, Zelda Merryweather reached out and grabbed the cloth hanging from the stall. She tugged the cloth. The bottles rattled, clanged. Zelda, with gritted teeth, yanked harder on the cloth.
Bottles clattered. With a mighty yank on the cloth, the bottles flew through the air, scattering at the feet of the scurrying shoppers. Mayhem ensued as shoppers, scrambling on all fours, swiftly swooped those bottles into bags and pockets.