Friday, July 26, 2013

Junking Memories: End of an Era?

Last week, I talked about a barn sale for a thrift that apparently has closed.  I say "apparently" because no formal announcement has been made, but the store web page says "closed until further notice."  The fact that they have cleared out their storage garage so that it can be torn down kind of lends a little more credence to the "closed" idea.

I'm kind of bummed about it.  Losing a thrift is always sad, even though this one, of late, has been pretty low on my list.  It wasn't always that way, but more on that in a minute.  I think Louisville is pretty thrift-poor for a large city.  We mainly have only the "name brands"--Goodwill and the like.  We have none of those little church-run thrifts staffed by little old ladies who mark things for fifty cents.  Heck, we're even poor in the "name brand" department.  Salvation Army closed its stores here a couple of years ago.

When this thrift first opened, it kind of filled that need for a little church-run thrift.  It's connected with a Catholic children's home, and in the old days was run by a couple of nuns and a bunch of volunteers, most of whom were older folks.  They had several rooms in three different buildings that were just crammed with all kinds of donations.  It was like they took anything that was offered to them.  It was a wonderful jumble of all kinds of stuff.  You could literally find anything there.

Mostly, the stuff wasn't priced.  You'd gather your armload and sister or one of the volunteers would price it, usually for a dollar or less.  They had this awesome section of religious articles that I would beeline for and load up!  I wasn't selling in those days just hoarding collecting, but it was a dream.  Room after room of fascinating awesomeness.  Cheap awesomeness.  To say that I loved it would be an understatement.

The one problem with the place was the hours.  It was only open Monday and Thursday mornings, along with one Saturday morning a month.  It really made hitting the place rather difficult.

Slowly but surely, the place started to change.  First they moved the bulk of it into one small house.  Then, it started to become less and less cluttered.  Then, the price tags started appearing.  By this time,  I was selling.  The prices weren't bad.  It was just a shock to see them.

Somewhere along this time, they hired a manager or some kind of staff person.  They got moved into a smaller place.  There was less selection.  They adopted regular hours.  Prices went up.  Ironically, as it became more accessible, everything about the place that made it unique and worth going to kind of dropped away.  I used to try to get there every chance I could make my schedule work.  By the end, I was hardly going at all.

I know that some other stuff happened.  There was a fire that closed it down for a while, but it opened back up.  Now, I just don't know what they are going to do with it.  It's kind of sad.  Even if it does reopen, it'll never be the way it was in the beginning.  I'll definitely miss what it used to be.

1 comment:

Shara said...

It's great you still have memories of what was once a fun place. There used to be a close out store here that had weird and fun things. Lots of household closeouts, but store closeouts too. My favorite thing there was a 55 gallon drum heaped to the top with buttons. That is a LOT of buttons. You could buy a scoop of them for $1.00. It was a fun place to browse and I miss it.