When his hectic academic routine gets overwhelming, Syracuse University student Mark Bidona has found himself a sanctuary.
“I think everyone needs a place where they can go clear their head,” said Bidona. “It’s so easy to get caught up in the bubble that is The Hill, you know?”
For Bidona, this means going to the local mall, Destiny USA.
“As soon as I walk in, the fresh scent from the variety of delicatessens in the food court mixed with the overwhelming perfume of Victoria’s Secret really lowers my anxiety and renews some sense of purpose in my life,” he said.
Without a car, Bidona often finds himself making the pilgrimage by bus. On this journey, said Bidona, he closes his eyes to avoid making eye contact with passengers or catching glimpses of the poverty out the window.
“Seeing those less affluent than me bums me out,” said Bidona. “I prefer a smooth transition from over-priced education to fluorescent-lit consumerism. It makes me feel more at peace.”
Sometimes Bidona doesn’t even buy anything, choosing instead to wander aimlessly. Just the prospect of potentially purchasing an item is enough bring him to an euphoric state. He then goes for a few rounds of glow in the dark mini golf, walks on the ropes course, and rides the carousel, totally ok with only receiving love in the form of material things.
“Life’s too short not to take some time for yourself,” said Bidona. “And I’m definitely buying the IPhone5C in at least three different colors because I have a lot of tests coming up this week.”