Saturday, December 09, 2006

'Tis The Season for Christmas Shopping

Yesterday Anna and I spent the day Christmas shopping. We spent most of the day at Cumberland Mall shopping. It is a mall in Smyrna we used to go to over 30 years ago. Recently the mall did an uplift, or is presently in the process of having one. It appears to be attracting the upscale shopping crowd now… the yuppies and the fur-coat crowd. I almost expected some well-dressed person with a Cumberland Mall logo on his/her sports jacket to give us the once over… after all, an upscale image is only as good as the upscale customers.

By dark we were entering downtown Marietta. Every December most of the antique shops in Marietta stay open every Friday night until fairly late – giving the Christmas spirit of shopping to the downtown Square area.

A certain item we are determined to get, for some reason, seemed more likely we would find it in one of the many antique shops in downtown Marietta. Wrong again.

However, we had another experience of just how small of a world Marietta can be. We were in an antique store that for years was my uncle Herbert Hunter’s Barber Shop. They knocked down a wall and now the antique shop took up the barbershop and Reeves’ Feed Store next door. Inside what used to be a barbershop I could visualize how it used to look: A row of framed ads down one wall, which the waiting chairs were under. Every so often a spittoon would be between two chairs. At the end of row of chairs was a Coke machine that sold bottled drinks for only a nickel. One time in the paper they had an article about Herbert refusing to go up on his prices of haircuts or the price of drinks out of his Coke machine. At the end of the room was shoeshine stand a little room built with no ceiling. It was just sort of a cubical. In the cubical were barber supplies and a toilet.

The lady who was in charge was on the phone. She was a pleasant looking elderly lady. When she got off we asked her what could she help us find and I told her I got many haircuts “in this room”. Our conversation went on to where did your uncle Herbert live in Marietta, and so on. She mentioned she worked at the First National Bank and I said so did my sister and Anna said so did her aunt. She knew Anna’s aunt and my sister. She wanted to talk more about Anna’s aunt Eloise and her two grandsons, asking the latest about them. And she knew Anna’s mother. One time Anna’s mother was an executor of her aunt-in-law estate and she invited this lady up to look at the all the antiques in the house. The aunt-in-law was a miser and never bought new furniture – all her belongings were antiques.

She also told us about the man who owned the long block long building who died a couple of years ago at 92. In the back of the one of the retail stores of the building he had a shop. He worked on things and repaired them. He worked on old clocks, old scales, and anything intricate. He loved doing that, he said it was kept him going and his mind sharp. And, because it was a self-medicating kind of activity, he did not charge for his services – because it was his pleasure. You don’t see much of that.

By the way, now that the man is dead, his wife has just approached the city council to change a park near their house to a dog park and name it in his honor, I haven’t heard if it got passed or not.

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Blogger kenju said...

Happy Anniversary! What did you do to celebrate?

Did you ever find the item you are looking for?

11:31 AM  
Blogger ET said...

Thank you!
We went to The Old Mill Restaurant in Acworth, Ga. It is a restaurant that was recently made from the hull of an old mill. Very interesting stuff inside and the food was great. We both had mountain Trout.
No, we didn't find that certain item, but we may have found something close enough to it this evening after we had dinner.

4:37 PM  
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12:11 PM  

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