the Economy Store

Dear Rosa,

I wonder if you knew that little shop located just off the town square. Was it there 70 years ago? Probably not, although it seemed to me it was that old, if not older.

A tiny store, run by Pat. It was a fixture in town and my Aunt Lilah worked there for years. Colorful kerchiefs to the left when you first walked in, candy to the right and an endless assortment of cheap, wonderful plastic toys filled the center tables.

I went to Northfield a few years back and found it open. How could I resist?  Stunned I was and excited to see nothing had changed.

Come on, I pulled my daughter from aisle to aisle, this is where you find the good stuff. Plastic dolls marked $1.69 and rings for every day that turned your fingers green- I bought a little of everything in sight.

This is like a museum, my daughter whispered and I had to hush her up. Didn’t want to offend Pat.

But she just smiled from behind her ancient cash register.

My brother’s and I would hit the Economy Store on our way to the town pool. Stocked up on candy and goodies for our long ride up a steep hill. Or come winter, when I’d had just too much snow, I’d stop in and buy some yarn. Not great yarn, nothing fancy, but pretty enough for a doll’s sweater.

It’s closed now. With Lilah’s passing then Pat’s there was no one to keep it going. Most of us wondered, just where did she get all that stuff? It was straight out of the 1970’s and looked brand new.

No one can replace Pat or the Economy Store. I’m just glad one of my daughter’s got to experience its magic.


2 thoughts on “the Economy Store

  1. We have a store like that in Wenatchee. The fun thing about it is that they never update the prices. If you riffle through the toys, there might be five prices for the same thing.

    1. Isn’t that what makes it a treasure? Don’t you just love it when the past remains the present? If I lived in Wenatchee, I’d buy a little of everything in site! Good thing I don’t live in Wenatchee…

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