Well, it’s been a throw-back kind of day. I had the car – woot – and several hours to myself to run some errands and just enjoy. I was looking forward to simply wandering. I did that a lot when last here.
On the way to town, I had to put my sunglasses on. It’s been a rarity since arriving so I found myself slipping into vampire mode. The hand goes to the eyes with a “what is that?” Of course, it’s only for a nanosecond. I wasn’t actually afraid of burning up. By the way, the sunglasses came off about a mile down the road.
Once close to town I noticed it was super busy. Parking can be a slight issue. Funnily enough, as I entered the car park, a car was leaving and in I slipped. Gotta love it when that happens. Anywho, I paid the fee and wandered off. There were a few places I wanted to check out and I had to top up my phone.
When here before, I found lots of bargains. Or, so I thought. I look back in awe at my free-wheeling spending then. In fairness, our dollar did buy a lot more in ’11. Today, one pound costs me two dollars and five cents. On the flip side, clients here pay me in pounds and since my charge rate is higher, it’s all good. Anywho, back to my meanderings.
In Devon’s north bit, prosperity has not run parallel to the heavier populated, more affluent south. Once, this region was hopping, but when the trains were cut back, and more and more folks could jet away for holidays to places where weather was predictable not to mention warmer, this place fell on hard times. However, those hard times are softening a tad me thinks.
There are new shops. Nice, trendy, funky spots with interesting items. Of course, the charity shops remain, but even some of them have new names and a bit more pizzazz. And of course, there are empty buildings but fewer, I’ll guess, than downtown London, Ontario. The big difference is that people still shop their downtown here. The streets and shops were packed today.
I’m always glad to see that. Many stores are run by local people, entrepreneurial types building a life here and hoping to make a go of it. With online shopping so convenient, and big box price points low, it’s tough. It is nice to see locals supporting other locals.
So, it was a lovely afternoon, quiet and calm, reflective and easy. Now, I need to sleep. I’ve been watching Doctor Who again. Love that show!
My wish tonight is that we find ways to better support each others work. Maybe we won’t want to stop picking up those Walmart bargains, but maybe we can make a point to find a local shop that sells one thing we are fond of and buy from them rather than a big box. There are other ways to support local people, too, like eating out, for example. Wouldn’t it be fun exploring local restaurants, owned and operated by your neighbour, who is not Colonel Saunders no matter how much you want that to be the case. Lol. Seriously, if we take stock, we may well surprise ourselves with how much time and money we send to mega corps. Sure, that other neighbour might work at a big box, but I’m not saying stop shopping there all together. All I’m asking it that we pay attention. I believe we have the power to support a lot more people than we realize.