I was in a mall today for the first time in a long time. My Trader Joe's is on the outskirts of an outdoor mall, but other than that, I don't think I've been in an indoor shopping mall in well over a year. What I learned, is that there will probably be very little reason to return anytime in 2009.
Malls are filled with maybe three or different types of stores (jewelry, clothes of various types, and electronics) and they're all basically selling the same thing. And right now, everything is on sale, which makes me wonder why anyone goes there during the rest of the year.
Why did I go to the mall? There was one store going out of business and I was hoping to see if there was anything worth buying given how inexpensive things would be. After all that, there wasn't. Really, at 40% off, there still wasn't anything worth spending money on.
What was interesting about the overall experience though is what happens at malls before the stores actually open. I got to the mall before the stores open. People were walking in so I figured it would be better to wait inside where it was warm than in my car. Plus, there was no coffee in my car.
There were probably a hundred people, really, walking around in circles throughout the mall. Mostly older people and mainly women. And these are serious walkers - a few of them almost ran me over. But in my search for coffee, I found the men. They were all sitting at the food court drinking coffee and playing cards and probably waiting for their wives.