Shopping Center Sunsets

Repost from old blog, 12/22/07

Good to remember around this time of year: shopping centers are often the best places to watch sunsets – a combination of wide open parking-lot horizons, plus (at least in my hilly western-Pennsylvania town) the fact that most shopping centers are built above the road.

Tonight my lover and I were doing some last-minute Christmas shopping, something nobody looks forward to. The parking lot was full, the lines were long, and I was waiting to buy a few things from the dollar store when I caught sight of an awesome sunset out the window. I ditched my items and went outside, sitting on the curb and taking it in while shoppers streamed around me.

It’s kind of great, the contrast between shopping – this very ground-level activity where thousands of small products compete for your attention – and communing with something gigantic, rare, and free. A few people stopped to look. What was more important?

Today was the winter solstice, which is the real reason for the season. The shortest day of the year went out in a truly glorious fashion, and I felt grateful to have witnessed it.