Hell hath no parking lot…

Hell hath no parking lot…

…like Waterford Lakes.

I hate this place. Absolutely hate it. The only reason we went is because that’s where Attack the Block, a super English invasion flick, was playing. So we had to go.

Want to set this up like an ancient grudge, in literary fashion? When I used to drive out to Kennedy Space Center to work, I’d ride on the 408 long before this complex was built. In the morning fog, one would have to take a care lest one hit a deer. It was all wilderness out there.

Now they blasted that all, the pine woods and deer, as effectually as a Martian heat ray. In its place, an open air “plaza”, acres of parking lot with strip malls floating about it in like bits of franchise in a superheated asphalt soup. There are four lane roads running this way and that, all crossing each other at four-way demolition derbys. To get from one store to the next, you have to get in your car and drive to the other shop, lest you wish to take on more heat and more dangerous cars than Mad Max.

And the people…

Waterford Lakes mall is out on the newly boomed east side of Orlando, lost in a sea of burbs and communities. So on a Sunday (hell, every day) it’s packed with the type of people Al-Qaida hates, overweight, over-privileged Americans with “Boot hill” t-shirts, flipflops and shades, all passing from one consumer trough to the next, wading out into traffic with that assurance only idiots have before fate (in the form of an FUV bumper) sweeps them away.

Can there be anything worse, after a movie, than to get into your car and drive 400 yards to go to a Hallmark store, to get out in 100 degree heat while people honk and snarl? And after your tiny purchase, to fight your way through a crashfest to get to the exit.

How my tension drained as we mounted the on-ramp to the 408, accelerating towards downtown and home in Colonialtown; old, gay, eclectic, undersized, shady, 1949 Colonial town.

I’ll leave the radioactive wastes to the mutants, as is best.