31 Dec Kansas is blogging again
The wonderful Halifax writer Jane Kansas left Stanfield Airport Tuesday morning at -21º (wind chill*), landing in Tampa, Florida, a few hours later at +35º (humidex*). She spent a few hours trying to get comfortable before falling into bed, sweaty and exhausted.
She slept ’til 6 a.m. then set off on a 10-hour walk through random parts of Tampa, including an Ikea store:
In IKEA I had an ice cream cone and wandered around. Near the end of my tour, which was at least two hours long (air conditioning), the wail of a child began. The cries bounced off the concrete floors and walls, and echoed through the Swedish caverns, from Lighting to Textiles. Loud. Unending. Eventually I came across the unfortunate, flanked by two thirtyish women bending over him. He was still howling.
“Looks like somebody needs a nap!” I said. My tone was only the tiniest bit caustic. Jaunty, really. The kid looked up. The two women, as one, straightened up and in unison said, “Excuuuse me?” and then one said, “That was inappropriate!”
I didn’t stop to think about what I wanted to say. I just said,”Well, now I have a headache and I have to leave.” And I walked on.
About ten seconds later I thought of what I wanted to have said. Something along the lines of, “I’m sorry. I’m from Canada and that would not have been inappropriate back home. What would be inappropriate is dragging around a tired child until he can’t stand it anymore. But I guess it’s a cultural thing.”
This is the second year Jane has chronicled her winter vacation. You won’t go wrong following the travelog.
* I don’t normally permit the phoney, scare terms “wind chill” and “humidex” to sully this space, but since this is Jane Kansas, Nova Scotia’s most original writer, I will grant her a one time literary licence.