Saturday, 1 April 2017

10:01 – It was 44.4F (7C) when I took Colin out around 0715 this morning, with winds gusting to about 50 MPH (80 KPH). We had more rain overnight, and more is forecast over the next several days, turning to snow next Thursday and Friday.

Barbara stopped at the lawn and garden place yesterday and picked up bags of peat moss and dried cow manure to make up potting mix so we can get some of our garden plants started indoors. We’re going to try broccoli again this year, but instead of planting it in the garden, where it gets eaten, we’re going to grow it in pots out on the deck. I also want to try garlic, bell peppers, and a bunch of herbs in pots on the deck. If we have room, I’d also like to try at least a few turnips and parsnips.

Coming home from the gym yesterday, Barbara made her usual Friday stop at the Lowes Supermarket. There’d been rumors floating around for a week or more that that Lowes was going to close soon, and several days ago they posted a notice on the door that they were in fact closing down. The press release said they’d close by the end of April, if not sooner. As it turns out, it’ll be a lot sooner. Barbara said when she was in there yesterday they were completely out of milk and almost out of meat and produce. Even the canned goods shelves were looking sparse.

They’re obviously not restocking at all. My guess is that a Lowes tractor trailer will pick up any cased canned goods they have in the back storage area, and they’ll just let natural attrition draw down what’s already on the shelves. At some point, they’ll just decide not to open the following day and probably donate everything that remains to a local charity.

Everyone who works there has been offered jobs at other Lowes Supermarket locations, but my guess is that few will take that offer. The nearest Lowes will now be in Mt. Airy, which is a 90-minute round-trip drive. I think most of them will hold out to see what goes in to replace Lowes.

The property developer who owns the Trojan Village shopping center has announced that they’re in negotiations with Grant’s, a small supermarket chain that’s headquartered in Galax, VA. We’re hoping they do open a new store where Lowes was, because the only other supermarket in town is Food Lion (hawk, spit).

Obviously, we keep a very deep pantry, so about all Barbara bought at Lowes was milk, bread, eggs, and other perishables. We can easily get those at one of the two local dollar stores, Walgreens, or as a last resort at Food Lion. So the closing won’t really affect us much. I’m sure Food Lion is happy, though. This leaves them with no direct competition inside 30 miles or more. I predict they’ll coincidentally have a general price increase soon, if they haven’t already.

Speaking of bread, we just made up a large batch of dough to bake this afternoon. Barbara is grilling beef ribs for dinner to go with the freshly-baked bread.

 

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