It’s time to pay homage to the corner store.

Yes, it is Walgreens of which I speak, the ubiquitous brick structures that seem so mysteriously identical, rendering that odd, almost-ethereal deja vu.

Admittedly, I wasn’t a fan at first, (I’ve been suspected of being less than amorous when it comes to corporations of size) and when one took shape just blocks from my home, I dismissed it. Their ads didn’t help–busy, crowded missives heralding cheap perfume and exercise equipment alongside discounted hygiene products and chocolate. I speculated I would also find year-round Christmas markdowns. Ugh.

But that was before we discovered the “As Seen on TV” aisle with its gigantic latex cupcake molds.

Seriously, Walgreens has come through for me in a pinch in so many ways during 2009, and I have no doubt it will continue to serve me well through 2010. I had no idea that a “neighborhood” drug store could be fun.

The latest come-from-behind victory for the W occurred last weekend when my camera batteries died. My camera is a bit particular, but (Eureeka!) I found what I needed at the Walgreens in the small town closest to where I was shooting at the time.

A partial Walgreens treasure chest:

ice scraper
Dog treats
Long balloons for artistic tying
Cold medicine
Trashy magazines
Hand-held disco lights
latex squeeze balls that light up
Half-price Valentine bears

Where else can you fill a prescription, change a camera battery, choose from a vast array of chocolate and homeopathic products, buy firewood AND rent a movie without venturing more than three blocks?

This neighbor thanks you, Walgreens.


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