Strolling briskly across the shiny, white tiles, my mum made sure I was ahead of her. It was the day before Christmas when my mum and I were shopping for a gift for my older brother in Vivo City. The hectic shopping mall was packed like sardines. The harried shoppers dashed wildly about, eager to find what they needed. Soon, we had to squeeze through the crowd. “Don’t wander away, Sarah,” my mum forewarned me. I completely ignored her. What is so important about that, I thought. All I wanted was to find a perfect Christmas gift for my brother. His delight seemed more important than my safety. I was as stubborn as a mule.
Flashing red, sparkling green, eye-catching gold, and crystal clear Christmas ornaments dotted the ceilings, I lifted my head to see the other taller shoppers pushing me around from all directions. I sighed, “When can these people learn to be polite and kind?” I caught a sight of an old Santa Claus striding around in the crowd. His bulbous body could barely fit through the sea of people. My mother and I continued searching high and low for a magnificent gift. As we were leisurely strolling around, something caught my attention. Children’s laughter burst everywhere and all sorts of toys roared, squealed and stirred. It was “Toys ‘r’ us”, a toy shop, just what we were looking for! I galloped at full speed ahead of my mother into the shop. We scanned for an interesting toy. Teddy bears, stuffed toys, balls and board games were everywhere. I smiled gleefully.
In the corner of my eye, a remote-control robot rolled past. “Beep!” I heard it yell. Awesome, I thought, keeping my eyes glued on the appealing toy. It jumped up and down like a rabbit. I wandered away unknowingly as I asked in my childish voice to an older boy, “Can I play with it?” “Sure,” he grinned, passing the remote-control to me. Excitedly, I controlled the robot to roll swiftly past me. I giggled to myself as I made the robot swing its arms freely. The new robot was really amazing! It lit up brightly as I pressed the buttons. When it leapt into the air, I was dumbfounded. Just as I wanted to ask my mother whether I could buy it for my brother, I turned around and saw nobody. My heart pounded wildly like a drum and butterflies fluttered up a storm inside my stomach.
I looked around frantically in alarm, desperate to find my mother but to no avail. I stared anxiously at the sea of strangers. The cacophony of chattering shoppers and Christmas carols almost made my eardrums burst. “Help! Help!” I screamed, but a few people simply laughed at my panic. How cruel of them! People are still so rude and mean. Anger flared inside me. Livid, I checked all her favourite stores, like Giordano and Daiso. Yet, she was nowhere to be seen. I was quickly running out of ideas. I lumbered clumsily in circles, waiting in nail-biting agony for a brilliant idea to enter my mind. Just then, a fantastic idea struck my befuddled mind. I willed my heavy feet towards the nearest Information Counter. The gregarious shoppers were conversing. I did not bother them at all. I asked the staff for help.
“Dear shoppers, a 3-year old girl called Sarah is lost in this mall. She wears a red shirt and a black jacket. She lost her parent in Toys ‘r’ us. If you are her parent, please report to Information Counter C on Level 2 immediately to fetch your child, thank you, “ the kind-hearted staff announced over the public system. The staff comforted me while waiting. After waiting for five minutes, a familiar looking lady sprinted towards me. It was my mum! “Mummy!” I cried dashing towards her. My mum embraced me in a big bear hug. “My little darling, where have you been?” she admonished. “I’m sorry,” I regretted.
I had learnt a fruitful lesson. From that day onwards, I dared not to wander away again. I decided to hold my mum’s hand tightly whenever we go out and I hope I would never be lost again!