A Shopping Mall For the Rest of Us

Yesterday I spent some time at the mall. I was on a mission for something in particular, but I sometimes enjoy an opportunity just to browse, when the stores have just opened and before the crowds show up too. My Christmas shopping is done so I felt no pressure to find that “something perfect”, instead I got a cup of my favorite Starbucks drink and went exploring.

Later in the day I wound up at the local library; I had some books to return and I wanted to spend some time in the quiet room working on a piece for my writing group. As I settled in with my laptop (and another Starbucks) I was struck with the contrast between the silence in the library and the cacophony of noise I had experienced at the mall. 

A few weeks ago I wrote about a hair salon ambiance that was more restful and more salon-like (dubbed Curl Up and Sigh by my friend, Kim Richardson) and I thought, why not a mall for the rest of us too?! So for those of us of a certain age, here are my mall ideas:

  • Get rid of that loud racket and replace it with soft jazz or classical music.
  • Provide valet parking and a coat check.
  • Have an enclosed, sound-proof lounge with big screen TVs playing sports where we can drop off our husbands for an hour while we take some time to browse.
  • Turn the temperature down! We’re warm enough already!
  • Have a minimum of two bookstores. We like the big box stores for their selection but we also like to support the smaller indy stores.
  • Intimate coffee shops where girlfriends can visit for an hour or so are a must.
  • Have a few salons where we can stop in for a pedicure with our girlfriends too.
  • Replace the stores that have outrageous clothing in sizes that don’t fit us (Seriously, size zero? Who’s cruel idea was that?) with stores where we can find fun outfits for our grandchildren.
  • Placed strategically near the exit a spa of another sort for those at the end of their shopping trip. Two words. Foot. Massage.

So, what do you think? Would you shop at a mall like that? What other ideas do you have for that perfect shopping mall experience?


I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things and the thin places where faith intersects.
  1. What a great idea. I would be there in a flash! Add a coffe and scone shop…gluten-free scones that actually taste yummy. Okay, put a bit of ice cream in that shop too. Maybe Godiva chocolate…forget the coffe; Godiva hot chocolate with lots of whipped cream…and don’t forget the scones! Okay, I’m there!

    1. Mmmmm…Judy I love those ideas! And now I’m hungry too!

  2. You are genius with this stuff. Really! I’d want to frequent that mall, too.

    A library, writing, and TWO Starbucks? That’s the perfect day right there. 🙂

    1. Now if only someone would make it so, Janna!

  3. When I was visiting family in Texas, my brother and I went shopping at Khols (sp?) – anyway, we were looking for jeans for our nieces and he kept saying “size ZERO? Huhn? how can someone be a size ZERO?” he just couldn’t understand and thought it was the stupidest thing ever *laughing*

    love the mall idea!

    1. Your brother is a smart man!

  4. Boy, if that mall existed, I’d be there all the time. I wish someone would put you in charge of the shopping world. 🙂

  5. Deb, you would think some planner somewhere would recognize this niche and do something about it, wouldn’t you!

  6. My sister, Ruth, had some great ideas for the mall too. How about a music store with sound booths that can be used to listen to music before purchasing? And another one with a plethera of instruments that you can try before buying? What about a third with a library of sheet music that can be trasnposed to the desired key before purchasing? (Can you tell that Ruth is musical?!)

  7. I’m sooo with you! Two thumbs up! I’d definitely shop there. It would have to have a fishing store, a sports shop or a coin shop for my husband…or I could just leave him at home. 😉

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