1964-12-21 - At the Store near Central Park...
Summary: Christmas Shopping with Gwen, Cindy, and Anya!
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
gwen-stacy cindy-moon anya 

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

The cherry-red vehicle is certainly looking festive as it rolls down the street. No shopping on 5th Avenue, their trip was directly to Macy's Department Store, They go through all of the sections, from Housewares to Toys, and Gwen has paid attention to what Cindy paid any particular attention to, or seemed particularly enamored of, discreetly noting for later purchase and pickup.

Anya is chattering quietly to herself in Spanish as she rifles through the items on various shelves.The girl has bundled up extra warm today, though for some reason she still defaults to a hoodie when out in public. It might mkae her more recognizalbe htan she ought to be really - the girl isn't being very discrete and she actually wore htis hoodie once before. the night they took out the human trafficking ring. There were nocameras, right? So it must ben o big deal . At the moment the young woman is biting her bottom lip as she sifts through a series of Christmas sweaters. Which are somehow eeverywhere, een in the Toys section.

Cindy, of course, was enamored of almost everything. She'd never seen such opulence before. She's from a place where nothing like this really is. She's never seen anything like Christmas in New York City, before. Its wild. Its crazy. And she's extremely interested in all of it. Every little thing is amazing to her. The clothes. The way the people interact with one another. Everything is new and fantastic.

Gwen is beginning to think this trip is as much a gift for Cindy as any present she plans to get. Definitely some clothes in Cindy's size instead of her own castoffs. She paused as she peered at the display of Hot Wheels(tm) cars, trying to find one that matches the Machine. She looks over to the display of Barbie's Dream House, which was flying off the shelves.
In a way, she was like Barbie. Some unreasonable proportions, and she had everything she could ever want.

Even Anya seems to be in a fairly good mood. She's glaring at a shelf full of barbies somewhat warily, right to the moment where she fnally catches sight of Gwen and Cindy. At first she smiles a little bit upon seeing the reaction of the North Korean woman to her newfound surroundings. Then she pauses for a second. The brief double take might be slightly more obvious than she'd like but the young woman is quickly looking away again. She shakes her head as if to dismiss an errant thought and goes back to glowering at an entire generation of children's dolls.

Cindy, for her part, is very much still quiet- happy to just watch everything as it happens. She looks over towards Anya when she's glance towards. Then she looks back towards Gwen. "Very much riches in New York City! Look how everyone buy many things for gift giving! Is very nice holiday." she says, beaming wide. "Good for soul to give."

Gwen nods as she walks towards the display of different Barbies and towards Anya. "Better to give than to receive. Throughout the year, not just during this holiday." She peers at Anya, trying to place her. She seems familiar.
"Hey…have we met?" she asks Anya suddenly. "You look awfully familiar…" She purses her lips in thought. "Do you go to Midtown often…?"

"Not *too* often," Anya responds slowly. She blinks once, then twice as Gwen approaches her. The girl arches a brow and then takes a deep breath. "I don't think we've met," she offers helpfully, shifting her weight from left to right. "Your friend looks completely overwhelmed. Her first time in the city…?" Anya turns to flash Cindy a bright smile, blinking briefly as she looks Cindy over from head to toe. "You're right, it's nice to see people care so much about the people, um surrounding them…." She fidgets a little bit and glances back at the shelf of toys."…Hm."

"Is Buddhist thought. To give. Give of self. Things are attachment, bring down. Tie down. Bad thing." Cindy tries to explain. "No need to receive. Only give." she beams brightly. She looks over to Anya, bowing her head. "Am Shin-Hye. IS good meeting you." She offers to Anya, "This is friend Gwen.!"

Gwen smiles and nods. "Shin's first Christmas in New York." She tilts her head slightly. "Shopping for family? The crowds are getting thicker…"
A customer suddenly says loudly, "This is highway robbery! I want this at the Christmas Eve price."
The unsettled cashier looks at the woman holding the Barbie doll in its box and says, "It's not Christmas Eve yet. We can't…"
"The customer is always right! And I want this at the sale price!"
"Ah, shut up, you old Grinch."
The woman froze, then turned to look at the woman who had spoken. Which had been Gwen.
"Why, you little juvenile delinquent! Who are you to tell me-"
Gwen stepped forward. "Right now, I'm the girl who's going to have to explain to my best friend how there are always going to be some bad apples spoiling the bushel. So why don't you pipe down, pay the price that's on it now, or go home and come back Christmas Eve to get the sale price. The world doesn't revolve around you…"

"Shin-hye," Anya manages carefully. "My name is Anya." She furrows her brow briefly as she listens to the other gitrl speak and then gives a thoughtful nod. "So you're a… Buddhist?" It's obvious by how the girl pronounces the word she has no idea what this actually entails but at least the young brunette seems to be taking the question seriously. Then the commotion begins.
Somewhat reflexively Anya steps closer to Cindy, placing herself beside the shorter woman as she utrns toward the person causing the disturbance. It looks like Anya might say something but Gwen steps in first leaving the young Latina to stare the confrontation somewhat warily.
"Where are you from…?" Anya asks softly. "I wish more people shared your philoosphy about giving."

Cindy watches quietly, head cocked to the side. "What is sale price?" she wonders then, "Why is rich woman mean to nice store lady?" she asks next, looking at the woman with the Barbie Doll. "Why is piece of plastic worth being cruel?" she asks next, frowning as she steps forward towards the cashier.

"You are good, yes?" Cindy wonders of the frazzled cashier, smiling towards Anya. "Yes. Shin-Hye is Buddhist Person. Believe in buddhist way." she smiles quietly. "Is good to meet new friend Anya." Then, turning back to the cashier. "Is okay. What is happened is happened. Now is all that exists. Now is all there is. No future. No past. Only now. Now is good, with new friends."

The woman reddens at Cindy's words, but says sternly, "Maybe you should tell your goo-"
"DON'T. Don't say what you were going to say. I have a rule against hitting a lady, but you say that word and give up the privilege. Now, apologzie to the cashier, and pay for the doll. The way they're selling, I doubt there'd be any left come Christmas Eve."
The woman looks at her…then capitulates, turning to the cashier. "I'll…buy this now, please."
Gwen exhaled, then turned to whisper to Cindy, "She wanted something cheaper than it is, and was going to bully the cashier into giving it to her. And I don't like bullies."

"I don't know what- a Buddhist *is*," Anya responds rather sheepishly but then she gives a quick nod. "Okay. That's good. It's nice ot have friends…." She takes a deep breath and then holds it for a moment, her expression one of careful thought. "The piece of plastic represents something. You talked about not being attached to stuff? Material things? This is what happens when people are, I guess. they want those things really badly…" She pauses for a moment before adding, "And know if they are mean they can get it. It doesn't cost them anything, right? Just have to be a total jerk. Lot of, um, people are like that here."
Anya lets Gwen handle the woma though she keeps an eye on the exchange. She particularly nods approvingly when the raciial slurs are being addressed. No doubt Anya has experienced a few herself from time to time.

Cindy smiles brightly to the woman, not seeming to be bothered but what might have followed. She looks at the woman, still beaming. "We are shaped by thoughts. We become what we think. When mind is pure, become pure. When mind is joyful, find joyfullike shadow that never leaves." she offers, bowing her head, "Mind is everything."

She looks then over to Anya, still smiling brightly. She doesn't seem bothered by being called anything- and she's certainly not about to make a scene in this store. "Love is form of understanding." Still smiling brightly, it never fades. She seems wholly unbothered by the racism.

It seems all right. Gwen can get plenty ticked off for both of them. She is trying not to be overprotective, but this sort of thing really ground her gears.
Well, it's over. The lady seems to have accepted the inevitable truth, and the cashier mouths "Thank you" silently when the woman digs for her wallet. "Sorry…" she says softly. "There's no place for that sort of thing."

"I'm not even- completely sure what you mean. Like… Just ignore the whole, um… Everything?" anya seems earnestly curious. She nods when Gwen turns back toward them and takes a deep breath. "I completely agree," the girl states clearly before looking around agian. "Anyway, I don't need any of this. What I reallly need ot od is find something for my dad…" She frowns for a second, tilting her head slightly to the left as she does. After a moment Anya shifts her gaze back to Cindy. "Okay, I give up. Maybe I don't love enough people or something because I still don't get it."

Cindy bows her head again to the abusive woman, and again to the Cashier before stepping out from behind the counter where she'd gone to give her quiet support to the person there. "Everyone walks along path with much suffering, Gwen. Suffering is not always easy to see. For Shin-Hye, easy to see. For this lady, suffering is hidden. Maybe does not even know there is suffering, until everything falls down like house of glass. Is important to remember that all are suffering, and all need kindness to make less suffering."

"At least she does not throw new friend under the wolf." Shin-Hye offers to the Cashier, "And call out mean things to boss."

Gwen shrugs. "That kind of quiet cool isn't easy to attain." She smiles to Cindy encouragingly. "Want to head to the Young Women's section, see if there are any clothes you'd like to get for Christmas…?"

"Under the wolf?" Anya begins slowly but she quickly nods. "Right. Under the bus," she reaffirms, mostly to herself. The girl takes a deep breath and holds it for a second before turning to squint at a nearby rack again. "I'm going to go- look at pens or… Something. I have no idea," Anya announces for the benefit of her newfound friends. "Catch you guys around?" She looks Cindy over once more and then shakes her head as she starts to step away.

"Is okay. No need buy clothes for holiday. Clothes have now is good clothes." Shin-Hye states, "No need when have clothes like now. When no clothes, then new clothes." The Korean woman offers, seemingly unbothered in wearing Gwen's hand-me-downs, even if they don't quite fit as well as they could. "Or, can make own clothes. Shin-Hye know how sew. With tools, make old clothes fit better. No need buy, just fix." she offers as she looks quietly to Anya.

"Very nice to meet you, new friend Anya! Have Merry Christmases!" she offers, waving as Anya begins off. Cindy looks over to Gwen, "She is nice."

Gwen waves to Anya, not wanting to act strange, even though there is still that familiar feeling. She looks to Cindy and smiles. "Yeah, she does seem nice. Maybe we'll meet again:" She pauses and smiles to Cindy. "Maybe I want to get you something just for you. Something that didn't belong to someone else first."

"Have this thing." Cindy replies to Gwen, "Have friend Gwen." She smiles brightly. "Is better than object. Is feeling. Feeling is real. Object can be taken away, Feeling is not easy to take away."

" A Mery Christmas to you too, Cindy," Anya replies cheerfully. "And yeah, I bt you'll see me around eventually." Then she is back to grumbling as she makes her way through the shop toward the far side of the room and a whole new set of displays. Stationery. Yes, really. Apparently she was actually serious about hunting for pens. At least she might well be here when the other two women return.

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