Okay, I hate malls. I find them to be the most unproductive man-made structures ever created on earth. Even worse than the concept of marriage, so to speak. I do not find any charm whatsoever in going to a mall, wasting a very expensive, non-renewable source for an hour just to find a parking spot, fighting off blood-thirsty contenders for that precious parking spot, then totally ignoring the weird omnipresent smell of chicken that seems to permeate each and every column of the basement parking lot, walking a thousand miles to reach the main shopping center, and then what? Loitering around aimlessly for about three hours until you are so weak in your knees that all you ever want is to flop back in your precious torn sofa and sleep.
So I’m not this Robin Sharma type person who is constantly berating people to have some aim in life. I would love nothing more than wandering aimlessly somewhere. Actually, that was what I wrote in the “My Aim” part of many high school slam books. “Be aimless.” But I want to wander aimlessly somewhere in tune with nature. Like on a beach. Not in a place where recycled air is pumped in, and it smells of chicken everywhere I go, and a tub of ice cream costs one-day’s salary.
Nevertheless, I visit malls more often that I would want to. It’s like the “hip” thing to do right now in India, I guess? Go to a newly opened mall, spend sometime in the sweltering heat inside (because, face it, there is no power and centralized AC is just a term) get jostled and elbowed by people who you don’t (want to) know, and pay through your nose for a cup of coffee that anyway tastes really, well, like mud mixed with water, keep walking aimlessly until you can count the bones in your body and then come back home and watch Fightclub, oohing and aahing simultaneously at the pain in the joints and at a shirtless Brad Pitt .
Coming from a place where there is really not much to do than keep looking at the clock and see when the mandatory 2-hour power cut is due, I am left with very few options. I can either go to the beach or to a mall. Both have parking space shortages, and both usually smell (former like fish, latter like chicken). But atleast, on a beach, I can watch the waves. In a shopping mall, I get flustered enough navigating the escalators that I usually break down more than the machines. And don’t even get me started with the “shopping” part of a shopping mall. Well, let me put it this way: Nobody watches Baywatch to finetune their life-saving skills.