Brian Doyle '78 | July 8, 2015
One of the three old grocery stores in our town is closing slowly. Its demise was announced a month ago, a casualty of corporate chess, and week by week the discounts mount and the shelves grow thin.
The fish counter is empty and dark, and the tall, dour man who ran it transferred to another store two towns west. The meat counter is empty and dark, and the sweet-faced, cheerful girl who ran it took the buyout and is going to take one more stab at college. All the good wines in the wine section are gone, and the only wines remaining are the ones you might use for cooking if you were desperate.
The checkout men and women are artificially cheerful, and when you mention how sad and bedraggled the store looks they smile and say it’s almost baseball season!, and you realize they are weary weary weary of talking about the demise of the store and how it was a central gathering point for every single person for a mile around and how because it stayed open until midnight you could swing by for milk or diapers or cough medicine so late at night that no one else was on the road except cops and the patrons of taverns.