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Tuesday, March 15, 2005

On Saturday it was 84 degrees and sunny. Today it's 50 degrees and raining. I'm dusting off the polo neck jumper as we speak.

Yesterday Big Sis went back to work, leaving Lisa and I free to watch trashy American TV and eat ice cream. We saw a very informative programme about Patti LaBelle, in which she told us how much she loves herself, how she's keeping it real (whilst being accompanied everywhere she goes by a security guard, and taking ten hours to get ready for a photo shoot), and how she's healed a lot of the world's pain, before claiming that the only reason she's not as big as Madonna is because people are racist.

I warmed to Patti the longer the show went on. Though obviously I wouldn't buy her records coz she's black.

In the evening Sis took us to the Town East Mall in Mesquite and dropped us off for two and a half hours while she went to the gym. Lisa and I made straight for the food court, and examined every outlet in turn before deciding which of the fine establishments would get our custom. Having travelled all the way across the Atlantic for the chance to experience an exciting new culture, I bravely chose a dish I'd never had before from a steakery joint I'd never been to. Lisa went for McDonalds.

Having failed to finish my gourmet chips with cheese and bacon, we headed down the escalator to a cookie shop and bought... biscuits, before wandering around the mall and meeting a man who heard our accents and immediately claimed to be from Bosnia. He seemed to think we might know it. Despite trying to engage us in conversation for the rest of the evening, we managed to get away and dived into Vitamin World where I bought a box of 'Throat Coat', a herbal tea which claims to add a protective coating to your throat and stop it getting sore. You're supposed to brew it for 15 minutes and then gargle before swallowing every mouthful, but so far I haven't stopped eating long enough to try it.

We finished up at Payless Shoes, where I impulsively bought a pair of brown slip-on shoes for twenty dollars. At that price, you know they're quality. And they're 100% man-made textiles. None of that animal rubbish.

Big Sis had arranged to pick us up at 9:15pm, so we were naturally thrilled to discover that the mall closed at 9pm. We stood outside hoping to avoid any drive-by shootings, until Sis arrived at 9:20pm, at which point she informed us that the Mesquite area, and the Town East Mall in particular, is considered a no-go area by a lot of people because of its soaring crime levels and generally high probability of being murdered, and that most of her friends wouldn't go within five miles of the place for fear of catching something.
She hadn't thought to mention it beforehand.

So it turns out we were wandering through the crime capital of Texas for two hours with an expensive camera dangling from my wrist. I did wonder why Sis floored the accelerator the moment she'd dropped us off.

But hey, at least the shoes were cheap.