228. A Black Friday memory

Friday, November 25, 2005

I never understood why they call today Black Friday. To me it is just the day after Thanksgiving, a day like every other day of the year. When I was younger, I used to brave the crowds with my mother each and every year, but when she passed on back in 1995 I just didn't feel like it anymore. I lost the desire for a lot of things when my mother passed on. The holidays just seem like another day to me.

Earlier I was sitting here thinking about today, and I was reminded of a day after Thanksgiving trip I took back in the early 90s. My mother and I had ventured out to brave the mall like so many others, but even with the holiday the mall was even busier than usual. I asked a couple of people why the mall was so crowded, and I soon learned that the then newly elected President of the United States, Bill Clinton, was making a special trip to the mall that day. I told my mother, and she grew very excited.

Even though we lived in Los Angeles, and she had lived there her whole life, she became excited whenever she saw anyone that remotely be considered a celebrity. This just wasn't any celebrity though. This was our new President. She wanted to meet him if she could. I told her it would nearly impossible, and by this time she was already very ill, so the hours she would need to stand in line would be impossible. We had planned a quick trip with lots of rest that day.

Well, she was adamant. She wanted to meet Clinton. We found a place to stand in line to wait, but an hour she just couldn't do it anymore. I pulled her out, and we looked for a store to sit and rest for a bit. We found one that happened to be on the route Clinton was taking through the mall, and the owner allowed us to come in and sit. I explained our situation to the man, and he was kind enough to let us both stay in the store until Clinton walked past. We then stood in the doorway, and he shook both our hands.

My mother was so happy. In over her fifty years of life by the point, she had never been so close to someone so important. She died a couple of years later, and I know that was one of the most special moments in her life. It didn't matter to me that it happened to the both of us, even though meeting a President is a very important thing. It was the look on her face, and how happy it made her that made the moment important. That Friday was anything but Black.


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