This photograph was grabbed from a cafe in a Rome shopping centre and it's so chaotic that I couldn't resist using it. I think it looks like Hell, but there was one good reason for being there. It's air conditioned and a good place to flee from the August heat. All the orange in the picture makes it look hot inside too. Shopping has become the pastime of choice for many people. It's what people do and the whole family has to be there, come what may. I don't think shops and shopping can be considered symbolic - although shopping can be classed as an addiction. So perhaps it belongs to Narcissus.and his reflection. There are plenty of reflections in this image, just look. Acquisition is a reflection of ourselves and can make us feel special. When it becomes an addiction, it helps the shopper feel less lonely, more fulfilled. And some are at risk of becoming an object, surrounded by lifeless objects in an object world. The familiarity of objects can make us feel safe, because no matter where we are, we can go into shops and see pretty much the same things. It's reassuring. It holds nothing dangerous or challenging and we are held securely in the embrace of this world. But our relationship with all the objects in the shopping centre is determined by money. It stands between our desire and the object - and that's a subject for another blog.