On my way home from a job interview, I decide to pull into a mall and grab a sandwich and do some light window shopping. It was the North Park Mall, very nice, big, clean, (looks to be)new, I like it. It's right around that time in the late afternoon where the population of mall people changes from legitimate shoppers, or browsers as the case may be, to mallrats. Not even the good Kevin Smith kind, either. Thugs and punks. I'm upstairs on the bridge to the parking garage watching a large group of said thugs harass an older employee of a makeup counter, presumably on her break, smoking and on her cell phone on a bench. Some of them sit on the bench next to her yelling loud obscenity laced nonsense and she retreats.
It is then that I notice another looky loo next to me. "This area has changed sooo much." He says. You can literally hear the sadness in his voice, and for some reason I kind of feel badly for him. We small talk for a few minutes, mostly about my hair and skin, as this gentleman works at Sephora. I tell him I'm new to town, he welcomes me and asks how I like it so far. I tell him I haven't really "gotten out" much. Just to the grocery store, this mall, and some bars. He laughs and says, "Well, where else would you need to go?" I tell him I'm just getting bored. I want to find a job so I can meet some people. He says that when he moved here it was horrible, he knew no one and everyone was just different, not necessarily mean, but snobbish. And merging and exiting on freeways drove him crazy.
Is this man my older, balder, gayer brother from another mother? I ask where he moved here from. "Oh, this little town just west of Houston." No way! Me too! He's from Katy! At this point his break is over and he has to go back to the magical land of make-up called Sephora.
"Welcome again to Dallas! Hang in there, Miss Katy! Once you get used to this town, it's not that bad." Thank you, nice Sephora man, I will hang in there!