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Monday, October 7, 2013

Bakers, The Variety Store

This story is about an ordinary village, with an ordinary store, named Bakers. Bakers was a variety store.  Before dollar stores and after five and dimes, there were variety stores.  It was a large store taking up most of the block.  When I moved to this town people said the supermarkets were just OK.  Lots of bagel and nail salons, but you really need to go to Bakers.


Bakers had long isles, and dim lights. No matter what I needed Bakers seemed to have it. I bought index cards, plastic laminate, a crochet hook,  and knee highs. The prices were reasonable, put on with the sticky tape that never comes off the plastic wrap. I hurried in and out of that store, even though I wanted to see all the items in it.  It was not a very welcoming store.


The reason it was not inviting was the people who worked there.  The man behind the counter ringing up the purchases was tall and thin. He had a bad complexion and his teeth clearly needed a visit to the dentist. He answered my questions in one word responses.  Once he sent me down an isle to find an item and when I turned he had left the register and was in back of me.  Other people worked in the store, I think.  They all looked the same, or were the same person I was never sure/  I always thought how the workers should get out of the store more.


The store was owned by Mr. Baker.  I did see him a few times and he looked like a customer not a worker.  Sadly, the store closed. Mr. Baker's wife died and he moved to Florida.  The store remained empty for a long time, and then rented by an organization.  There was a tragic accident and a child was killed in the store. A car slammed through the window.  The store remains empty though it has new windows, new lighting, and a new entrance.


I miss the convenience, but after reading Stephen King all my life, I honestly don't regret the demise of Bakers the variety store.

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