Monday, April 18, 2016

Return to Northgate

I hadn't been to Northgate Mall in I don't know how long. Mostly I have fond memories of going there with my mom's parents and hitting the K&W Cafeteria and ordering pretty much one of everything: fried chicken, baked spaghetti, garlic bread, pie, cornbread. It was ridiculous, but beautiful in its own way.

That is long gone. In its place is a food court which is occupied, oddly enough, by chains you have never heard of. There is a fake Sbarros, an estwhile Cinnabons, etc. All the regular types of food stalls are there, they just aren't name brands. Which is odd, in some sense.

In another sense, it's not. Northgate is now a distinctly lower- to lower-middle wealth mall. Most of the people I saw there were people of color, and those that weren't weren't the fanciest.

I saw categories of stores I'd never seen before, including a cafe of smells, selling scented candles, oils, etc. It was presided over by a woman in hijab. There was a carousel, and a bouncy house. In the jewelry store, a woman was talking to a friend on the phone..

But most importantly, I found what I was looking for, a Radio Shack that was still open, and though they didn't have the adapter I needed for my phone headset, they had another perfectly nice and functional headset for 20 bucks.

My overriding feeling upon leaving the mall was that I really hope that Jeff Bezos does not succeed in his mission to consume the world. There were all these small shops there, selling people things they needed and things they didn't. Nobody was making much money, but they were all getting through the day in good form. And there was a bouncy house and a carousel, which Amazon conspicuously lacks.

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