On Saturday I did something I had not done in a long time - I went to the mall, as in Four Seasons Town Center, Greensboro. Madeline and I were hanging out and she suggested it. I have to admit that it was kind of fun.
I was surprised at how crowded it was. We had to park way away from the entrance. And it was indeed very full of people. There seemed to be a lot of big post-holiday sales going on, but I then don't really know if that's why it was so crowded.
Madeline disappeared into several stores and I spent a fair bit of time hanging out by the interior railing on the second of the three floors just watching people. I have to say it was an oddly interesting and positive experience. Abd that's coming from a guy who pretty much hates malls.
Both interesting, pleasing and somewhat encouraging was the amazing diversity of the people. I didn't do any counting but the crowd appeared about equal parts White/Caucasian, Hispanic, and African American, with a significant number of Asian - mostly East Asian but lots of folks from the Indian Subcontinent. Some of the "Asian" people looked like maybe they were indigenous people of Central or South America. I guess that is a kind of Asian. Anyway, it was quite the potpourri!
There were very few groups of wandering young males of any color. It appears that the mall staff is working hard to make the place safer and less threatening to its visitors. That is fine by me.
There were all sorts of mixes of family groups - couples, large families, older parents with children and grandchildren, one parent with child, etc. There were lots and lots of kids of all sizes and skin colors - well, actually there were lots of adults of all sizes and skin colors too! There were also many racially mixed couples - pretty much every sort one could think of. People seemed kind of happy and chill and totally unbothered by all the folks of other ethnicities.
I kept thinking of all the stories of how so many of these people from so many places on earth got here. And to think of where we have come in the last four or five decades! I mean, I did not pick up on the slightest tension in the crowd - everyone really seemed so chill and at ease. Wow have we come a long way!
If this is where our nation is heading it is certainly alright with me! There was something in that crowd that seemed to me so quintessentially American it just made me feel good, good about being at the mall that day, and good about our nation.