“Bring me back a magnet.”
That’s the only request my mom has when I go on vacation. It’s a simple request and an inexpensive gift. It takes a minute or two to find at a gift shop and only costs a few dollars. I don’t know why my mom likes having a magnet that shows a place that she didn’t visit, but she does, and I don’t question her.
We walked into what felt like the hundredth local shop of the trip. I asked the store clerk, “do you have any magnets?” and got the same answer that I’d gotten all trip. “Magnets? I don’t think so.” There are no magnets in Cleveland, Ohio. They either don’t want other people to know that you visited their city, or they believe refrigerators are sacred and should not be tattooed.
While I was asking about magnets, Jess was checking out the rest of the store. They had jewelry, clothes, purses, scarfs, and a bunch of other stuff that girls love looking at and trying on. It was one of those stores that I remember going to as a kid where my mom would go inside and my dad would wait outside. His thinking was that mom wouldn’t take as long if he were outside, implying that he was done shopping and was ready to go. That, or he didn’t want to see the prices and the eventual bill that mom would rack up.
I found her looking at necklaces. Each necklace had a little tag with a saying on them. She found one that said, “To The Moon And Back.” “This one reminds me of Bright,” she told me. Bright is a song by Echosmith that has a special meaning to us. I asked her how much the necklace cost, but there was no price. She put the necklace back, saying that she didn’t really want it, and wandered off to check out the rest of the shop.
This necklace could’ve cost $5 or $500, and it wouldn’t have mattered to me at that moment. I was buying it for her. When a girl says, “I don’t really want it,” it usually means, “You better buy this for me right now cause it would mean a lot to me.” I grabbed the necklace, walked up to the register, and handed them the $300 that they were asking for it. Just kidding. It was only half that. They put it in a cute little bag, and I put it in my pocket before walking away from the checkout counter, hoping Jess didn’t see me.
On our walk back to the house, she was talking about this bracelet she bought. I handed her the bag and told her that I hope this goes well with the bracelet. She seemed surprised, but I have a feeling that she knew it was coming. She gave me a kiss and a “thank you” before she even opened the bag.
Inside was the magnet.