“Small cheer and great welcome makes a merry feast.”

~William Shakespeare

Clothing. Shoes. Makeup. Women love it. Shopping centers though, I find are not quite as enjoyable. Despite having stores that hold the items I so dearly love, traveling in a stuffy environment for hours does not appeal to me. Even just visiting a couple of stores one after another can be draining. Many of these stores have men in suits standing in front of their entrances. In the Manhattan Mall I found one of the most amazing human beings I have ever been graced to hear.

manhattan mall









Walking at night on the lowest floor, a booming jovial voice from a slightly rounded Jamaican man came calling after customers exclaiming, “Thank you for coming! Thank you for shopping!” which was then followed by a sing-song like “JC PENNY!”  His smile followed passersby such as me infectiously. Every five minutes he would sing his greeting and at 9pm at night it brightened my sluggish, normally slightly agitated demeanor. It is strange how something so small, someone excitedly greeting you in a rhythmic sing-song like manner, can really change your entire attitude. Normally at night, I, like many other New Yorkers, just want to get home and shower off whatever negative occurrence happened that day. Hearing that “JC PENNY!” and see the man slowly wave with a smile and rosy cheeks not only made me laugh, but also put a smile on my face to the other people I walked by before making my way to the trains. Here I learned that the best way to end the day is with a smile and a laugh.







~Sophia Calderone


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