We are at the Mall of America (MOA), biggest mall in the US and coincidentally, where Justin and I spent a lot of time on our honeymoon. Yes, we honeymooned in Minnesota and it rocked! You get lots of special attention when you’re on your honeymoon in a non-typical honeymoon destination. I highly recommend it.
Although my newest sister-in-law was married and honeymooned in Ireland…I’m sure that rocked even more. 🙂
Anyway, we’re with my in-laws: Justin’s mom and dad, his sister and her two kids, his older brother, his wife, and their gorgeous little one, and his younger brother. Full house. Full airplane. Full hotel shuttle to the MOA.
The MOA is four stories with an amusement park in the middle. The third floor is restaurants on the outside and a food court in the middle. Trying to coordinate where 14 people were going to eat was crazy, so we split up. Justin went to Chipotle for him and I – yum – and I got the boys a horribly non-nutritious lunch of mini corn dogs and fries. I took our littlest one with me, in his new umbrella stroller, and got all three kids their meals, complete with sodas. I snagged a small table near the A&W, and waited.
Little boy didn’t want to be in his stroller, as he wanted to go play with Legos in the huge Lego store directly under us. When I went to get our food, he scooted himself backwards while strapped in his stroller and bumped into the walker of an older gentleman wearing a Vietnam Veteran’s hat, who was eating lunch with two older ladies, one of whom also had the same walker.
I apologized, and admonished my Little, but when I turned my back, he did it again. The man was so kind, and smiled at me. After a few minutes, he got my attention and offered me two pieces of Orbit gum, because my little one was finally behaving.
My other sister-in-law found a larger table for all of us on the other side of the food court, so I had to move. As I waited for Justin to come help me grab our tray of food and drinks, I held the tray on my hip and maneuvered the stroller into position.
The kind gentleman, said, “Excuse me, do you need help?” and he shifted in his chair to stand.
I smiled at his generosity, and said, “No, thank you, my husband’s coming to help me,” and nodded towards Justin, who was walking over.
What surprised me was my first thought at his offer. “How was he going to help me?” I couldn’t carry the tray or drinks and push my little one, and I didn’t know how this gentleman would have carried it either, and used his walker.
The important thing was that the walker wasn’t even in the man’s thoughts. He saw a young mom with more than she could handle, and he wanted to help. Maybe he didn’t really need the walker to get around, I don’t know. All I know is that I saw beauty come from this man who was once a stranger, but now, in spirit, I consider a friend.