Not a Creature Was Stirring

Posted: 17 November 2008 in Charlottesville, other folks

Since moving to a smaller town, life has become a lot less expensive.  Of course, we don’t have any friends and we’re eating at home a lot more, but combined with other little differences, like a 5 minute, carpooled commute and lower rent, we’re saving money.  So although I see the economic crisis settling on the country, we have more caution and less panic.  Things seemed pretty normal until today. 

I grabbed a quick, quiet bite of dinner at a cafe attached to a mall.  I thought it was more deserted than it should be for a weekday night after work, but not knowing Chapel Hill, or the area of town I was in, I assumed it was just an out of the way location.  After supper in an effort to kill some time, I walked through the mall.  I admit being a little excited.  After all, the Charlottesville mall leaves more than a little to be desired.

The mall had evergreens strung from every surface.  A huge tree of poinsettias sat in the the middle.  Wreaths and silver bells covered in frosty looking fake snow hung from the ceiling and a giant Santa throne and despondent Santa squatted at the end of one wing.  After getting over my amazement at the Christmas-centered decor, I noticed that no one was there.  No one was buying books, silver rings or browsing the Hallmark decorations.  The cell phone guy was falling asleep and the Starbucks barista was reading.  The only people I saw were in the drugstore, and there were just a few folks in line, spending frugally.

I know it’s a Monday.  And it isn’t December.  But this was the wrong kind of deserted.  A zombie deserted.  An aftermath deserted.  A crisis deserted.  But I understand.  I wasn’t buying anything either.

  1. Digger says:

    Which mall in Chapel Hill were you in? If you were in the small one that is actually in Chapel Hill, it has been deserted since South Point mall opened up down the interstate.

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