Behind us, during the show, they had set up dozens of tables each meant to showcase some organization that has some cultural or educational value. Unfortunately by the time the show ended and the audience was really dispersed they were already packing up, just as they had last year. I don't get this; the events were supposed to run until 6 pm and why would you pack your stand up before the show on stage had finished?
So as with last year the thing we were most able to see was an arts-and-crafts stand where people were given those black-wax-covered figures you scrape off to reveal rainbow colors underneath. We got a pair of dragons and scratched out multicolored streaks within the dragon silhouettes and those fit nicely with the fans we decorated similarly last year. After we were done we noticed some of the dragons they had on display, with nice swooping curls and vortices and I realized I should've been scraping the black wax off like that instead. Maybe next year I'll remember, although probably we won't.
Something we caught just as they were packing up was a group from the community college's veterinary care program who was there for ... I'm not sure exactly. But the woman from this program had a rather pleasant-looking snake, who'd tied herself up into a knot around her hand, but who was uncurling enough to climb up and sniff around a guy who was impressed by all of this. We had a little chance to stroke the snake mid-torso while it figured out what it wanted to tongue-flicker at and then it was time for it to get tucked back in a pillowcase and return home. I don't know what the rush was.
We still went around the tables, looking at the remnants, mostly flyers offering programs or cultural centers, and somehow we got a flyer urging us to download an app for take-out Chinese food that's actually probably useful if narrowly focused. And after that, well, we just spent some time hanging around the mall, like we would back in the day when we were teenagers, when we were part of the next-to-the-last age cohort that hung out at malls. bunny_hugger found a Pokemon game she'd wanted at Gamestop, and we looked sadly at the newly-shuttered Radio Shack, and at the bookstore we discovered a Folkmanis owl puppet which has a beak that doesn't move, but does have a head on a pivot, so it swivels freely, and has a trigger inside so the eyes blink. It looks crazily professional. We might get it yet.
Trivia: Ahead of Voyager 2's encounter with Uranus the imaging team wanted to have reception of 330 images per day. The Deep Space Network could guarantee, under ideal conditions, 320 images. Source: Voyager: Seeking Newer Worlds In The Third Great Age of Discovery, Stephen J Pyne.
Currently Reading: Before The Mayflower: A History of Black America, Lerone Bennett, Jr.