Now that I am considerably older, I have a dream. I want to go up the down elevator in Nordstrom’s Department Store. I want to start at the bottom of the down and make it to the top. Why Nordstrom’s, because there is always a piano player there and I can do better exercises to music. Today was the day I was going to do it or else. I drove to the closest parking spot, which led me directly into the menswear department entrance. It is the closest to the escalators. I was nervous. My heart was pounding a mile a minute. I didn’t even lock my car. I was single focused. I had my eyes on the door. I entered and walked directly to the escalator going down. I waited for people to come down. There it is, my time is now, the steps were clear. I took a giant gulp of air and held my breath during the entire journey. I trampled over my self, got on all fours and plowed at the stairs. I grabbed to see if I could pull myself up and there I was just a tiny distance from the top. There were only two or was it three stairs to go and I would be there. Not so fast because, down I went, my knee hammering the edge of the stair and the working of my arms and hands plus the grabbing at the stairs stopped as I let the escalator’s mechanisms take me down to my starting point. I was so close, I said to myself. I was nearly there. I had the goal in my sights. My knee was bleeding and several people stopped to help me up and to see if I was going to be all right. One lady said, “ Just what are you trying to do?”

I answered her with, “Following my dream.”

“What kind of dream is this?”

“Getting to the top.”

“What are you trying to prove?”

“Prove that I can still have a dream. Prove that I can make it work.”

“You can have your dream, I guess, but are you alright and you need to fix your knee. Here is a napkin. It will do for right now.”

“Hey, thanks.”

I started eyeing and surveying how I could make that climb.

“ Dear, you are not going to do it again are you?”

I stood at the bottom of the down, contemplating if I should go up another time, sure of myself, sure I would make it. Within moments of dabbing my bloodied knee, I came to realize that I am not going to make it to the top but I choose to keep thinking I can. I still have the dream and one day I will try it again. Meanwhile, the dream is secure and if I never get to the top, I have made the effort and given a descent crack at it. I have done the best I can for right now.

7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Exercises » UP THE DOWN
  2. nikpalc
    Jan 14, 2008 @ 23:29:07

    If you tried your best that’s good enough for me.


  3. Emily Goerss
    Jan 14, 2008 @ 23:58:04

    This is great. Everyone knows Nordtrom’s has the best music to climb the stairs to the stars. I think it would be hard for someone to do that though. You would have to leave your heels and big purse at home. Perhaps a helmet and knee pads would help. You must be able to do two steps at a time and all pant legs must be tight around the ankle. No dangling participles!

    On the count of three, signal the piano player to play,Fly Me To The Moon and then have an announcement that a special sale will be on the third floor. I will race you up those stairs and we will both make it to the top. There is no way two women are not going to make that sale!


  4. Ilene
    Jan 16, 2008 @ 01:37:17

    Sheila…..wait for me, next time we’ll go UP the stairs together.


  5. Dina Marshall
    Jan 19, 2008 @ 13:13:57


    Your response made me laugh out loud!



  6. Emily Goerss
    Jan 20, 2008 @ 00:32:24

    Hello Dina,

    You can join us too. We will cause such a distraction that the other women will miss the sale. You can be our shill and collect all the bargains. We need young blood to help us accomplish this goal in life.



  7. cynthia
    Feb 13, 2008 @ 17:39:54

    I’ve been reading (and enjoying!) your blog. Thanks for telling me about it.
    I especially liked your tale of trying to go up the down escalator at Nordstrom.
    I actually did that once. I was leaving Montreal, where I had spent a month
    as press officer for the Ethiopian Pavilion, with my boss, the Ethiopian
    Minister of Tourism. We were so late that we were still dressing in the taxi
    on our way to the airport. We hotfooted it through the airport trying to find
    the gate to our plane for New York (in those days you could board within
    minutes of take-off), and the only escalator up was the one coming down.
    Before I could even think about it, my boss had sprinted up the down
    escalator. I had no choice but to follow him. Which I did.

    That was in 1967, when I was a lot younger. I’m sure I couldn’t do it now!


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