Different Black Friday

Or as long as Carter has been alive we have spent Black Friday at the farm. It was the perfect anti-black Friday place to be because lord knows there is not much shopping in Danville, Va, except if you needed a fur coat and then you went to Rippies. Our normal post Thanksgiving activities in the past were spending time with friends who came up to the farm, to take long walks, visit with my cousins and go for Mexican food for lunch where my father would tell stories.

I think my parents were relieved not to have farm guests, or cooking to do, so we stayed home today and did what regular southerners do on Black Friday, go shopping, decorate the house for Christmas and eat leftovers. Now the last thing I want to do on any day of the year is go to the Mall, certainly not on this day. If I must go, I go at ten in the morning on a Tuesday when no one will be there, but Carter had a ring she needed to return to Nordstrom and a watch that needed to get fixed and I wanted her to look at a few ideas for Christmas.

As we approached the mall I could see that there was not a parking place in sight. We drove to the upper back lot by Belk, where usually you can park in the first row and I had my usual parking luck as a car pulled out right as I turned in. Carter and I made quick haste to the watch guy and then off to the return desk at Nordstrom. Carter had ordered a ring this summer and two of the stones had fallen out. She still had the email receipt so the girl gladly refunded her money back on her card. It took less than a minute, no waiting. This was the reason I told Carter to buy the ring from Nordstrom in the first place.

We then looked at a couple of potential Christmas gifts. The nice clerk who was helping us told us that they did not stock something in the color Carter wanted, but that the manufacturer had it on their website and we should order it directly from them. I told her I was sorry not to give her the business, but she said, “It is more important for you to get exactly what you want, even if you don’t buy it here.” I have to say my dislike for shopping waned just a little bit today.

Getting out of the mall was almost harder than getting in as the number of cars looking for parking had increased. I was impressed that the mall security was out in force directing traffic. Maybe brick and mortar places have finally learned to deal with the things that make me hate them.

We went home and by this time the cold that Carter brought home from Boston was beginning to get the best of her. We canceled the rest of her afternoon plans and she went to bed for a good healing nap. That meant that I could begin the throwing up of Christmas around the house a day earlier than usual. Traditionally Thanksgiving Saturday is when I begin the decorating, but I need every possible moment this year. Russ did most of the work getting the first 25 boxes out of the attic.

Because it makes me most happy, I start with the needlepoint garlands. After putting up the greenery around the opening to the living room I discovered that one set of lights on the garland had given up the ghost. Shit! This meant a second Black Friday shopping trip to Target. Our Target had undergone a renovation and I had no idea where to find what I was looking for. Here’s a hint, extension cords are now in the same aisle as snow shovels, which is nowhere near the command hook or light bulb aisles, and far from the Christmas lights. There I just saved you twenty minutes.

I did get to go visit Carter’s sister E and Lynn, who usually wold be at the farm with us, so one regular Black Friday tradition remained a little. I skipped going to the movies with them so I cold continue working. After a good four hour nap Carter came up and talked to me while I worked. My house looks like more of a wreck as I have just started the process. Hopefully it won’t take me all weekend to finish. It was a different Black Friday than we usually have, but being together is the same and is really the only thing that matters.

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