Friday, March 11, 2016

A beautiful day in Richmond, VA.  Sunshine and temps in the 70's. Just about perfect.

And for me, that means perfect for shopping!

Today I went on a treasure hunt of another sort. Returning from a doctor's visit, I went right by a mall where a local Macy's is closing. I decided to check out the final closing bargains, hoping to score a dress or at least a couple of tops. When I arrived at the store, it looked so strange that I was taken aback for a few minutes. All of the merchandise was gone, and the once busy store was emptied down to the fixtures. It was peopled by an army of headless mannequins and some industrious liquidation team members. How had so much time slipped by?

This store had been a favorite of mine through the 1980's and 90's, but as I stood looking in, I realized that I have seldom been to this Macy's in the last ten years. Newer stores have opened, closer to my house, and this mall, which was new and shiny when I was a college girl in the 70's, is now  grown old and mediocre ( like me perhaps?)

 I remembered hunting for dresses as spring approached, catching jeans on sale in October,  and standing in line for gift boxes at Christmas. A strong desire formed in my mind--- I need a piece of this store!

But what could I justify? The headless mannequins were fascinating: troops of skinny women in show off poses with no mouths to tell secrets. But what would my husband think  about one of those in our living room? They seemed too dear also; most were tagged at $100.

Then I began to notice the display racks: all shapes and sizes, wood bases and chrome bases, square, round, tall, short. Some advertised the brands they had once displayed. Why not one of these to use in my antique booth?

The idea took root; how fabulous to have a piece of Macy's in my own shop, but the prices were still too high.

Then I was approached by an energetic woman who began to talk price. The Queen of the Liquidation! "I've already marked these 50% off", she said, "and I'm going to mark them down again, so let me know what you are interested in, and I'll make you a deal."

A deal? Now we're talking. With renewed energy, I walked the perimeter of the once beloved Misses' department. I kept  coming back to a wood and glass display with gleaming chrome pegs on either side and a popular dressmaker's name on a plaque. It was still tagged at $100. She had 4 of these left and was ready to deal.  I got my dress rack for $10! Trusting my new friend, I began to look for more treasure.

As I walked the store, I shared smiles and words with a few other Macy's shoppers, all of whom remarked on the strangeness of the empty store where we had spent many happy hours.

After a half hour trip down memory lane, I had amassed a few more things : a stack of Macy's mailing boxes, a rotating Estee Lauder counter display, a half mannequin, and a 12" black plastic "S" from the end of a Macy's sign .

The liquidation lady marked my pile "Sold" and totaled my purchases: $18.00.

I'll have a ball cleaning the displays up and using them; the S is  displayed on my desk, and I'll use the boxes for shipping.

On a pretty spring day, I enjoyed treasure hunting in a place filled with wonderful shopping memories.

Today, S was for Macy's, memories, spring, shopping, and nostalgia.

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