I love the convenience of shopping online ~ the anytime-anywhere-never-a-wait-oh-so-easy-shipping experience.
But I miss brick-and-mortar. Maybe that’s why I’m such an Apple fan.
Now there’s a juggernaut of a retail experience, lots of touch and feel and instant gratification. And that mind-blowing sense of excitement in the store. E-commerce in the cloud? Not so much. *Note to Amazon: Maybe it’s time to start thinking inside the box.
When I was a kid, Mom and I went to G. Fox & Co., a huge department store, in Hartford, Ct.
It was A. Very. Big. Deal. We’d ride the elevator to almost every floor.
The captain sent you to an available car and the operators announced the floors. Fifth Floor: Fur Salon, Millinery and Maternity…...Tenth Floor: Trim The Home Shop, Knitting and Needlework. All in a snappy patter.
Second Floor : Career Shops, Connecticut Room, Bakery. Lunch in the circular Connecticut Room involved proper manners, hats and white gloves. I always ordered the chicken pot pie, Mom had a date nut bread sandwich. While we ate, glamourous models circled the dining room. If I was lucky, I took home mocha-and-pink frosted cupcakes from the bakery.
Beatrice Fox Auerbach was president of G. Fox & Company at a time when few women were in retail management positions. She knew what she was doing. You could Try and Buy Anything ~ notions, books and bedspreads, custom-made chignons, monogrammed linens, silver services for 8 in wooden velvet-lined boxes, draperies and drugs, gowns and leather goods, shoes and storm windows, Foxco Witch Hazel and foundation garments.
Sixth Floor: Young Connecticut. Blackwatch plaid shirtwaist dresses with Peter Pan collars. Pure honey.
But it was the Eleventh Floor ~ Toys, Pets, Hobbies ~ that holds the richest memories.
The toy department was stocked with the latest playthings ~ and the doll of my dreams, Saucy Walker. It was the noisiest and busiest floor during the holidays. Centennial Hall was an enchanting Santa Land with surreal decorations and an unspeakably majestic replica of Cinderella’s coach. Zillions of kids had Santa’s ear. So did I.
(Try doing this in the cloud.)
It’s 2012. Everything is possible. Even keeping tabs on the man in the suit who knows when you are sleeping and if you’ve been bad or good. Track him here….
BTW, Santa, this year my list isn’t on 13 pages in a blue-lined composition book with notes in the left hand margin. It’s an app. https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/the-christmas-list/id340779800?mt=8