Walking with My Mother at the Mall on Super Bowl Sunday

My mother never stopped being keen about walking, even when she could no longer walk in her beloved woods. The safest place for her to exercise is the Lewis County Mall, where she picks up a cart outside the Sears store and pushes it around and around the mall’s small interior.
On Super Bowl Sunday, I take her to walk. The mall is dark, the main doors locked. Let me explain the Lewis County Mall. There are only two stores: Sears and the scary “sporting goods” store, with dead animal heads on the walls and a pink t-shirt in the window sporting a knock-off of the Starbucks logo that says, “I love guns and coffee.” It was closed for the game. Other than that it’s all county services offices, also closed on Sunday. Hence the lockdown.
We enter through the Sears’ doors, past the clerks wearing Seahawks shirts, calling “Go Hawks!” to us.
“Who are the Seahawks playing against?” Mama asks me once we get a cart and begin our slow ramble.
“I have no idea,” I say.
She laughs. It’s a sound I rarely hear anymore.
“Does the winner go to the Rose Bowl?” she asks.
“I think so,” I say.


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