Saturday, 10 September 2011

Love Local

Shopping. Love it or hate it, it’s a necessary evil. Even credit-phobes have to wander down to Marks and Sparks once in a while to buy a new pair of socks and a loaf of bread.
Even as someone who does actually enjoy shopping to a degree, there are times when I really don’t want to do it – especially when I know that the best place for me to go to get what I need is either Oxford Street or, at a push, the concrete horror of Brent Cross. Earlier this week I realised that such a date with my debit card was approaching. I bemoaned my fate at work and begged my colleagues to help me come up with a more palatable solution.
“Why don’t you just pop down to Holloway? Then get the bus to Angel if you need to afterwards?” My chum piped up. I looked at her with scorn. Holloway? For two Birthday presents, a Christening gift and a new pair of shoes?
“You can go to Selby’s. They have everything.” She smugly added before I could even speak.
She had a point. I pondered my shopping list. There was always Bedford’s on Holloway for gifts, Mothercare for baby clothes and Selby’s for the overnight bag I had been tasked with finding for my best mate. Priceless Shoes would meet my footwear needs and the local Argos and O2 shop ticked other items off my list. There was even Holloway Cycles for me to browse around in my quest for my first set of wheels.
So, when Him Indoors finally dragged his arse out of bed we headed out. Okay, so we ended up in Angel (Him Indoors needed a HSBC and Accessorize saved the day for my bag-hunt), but even so I got everything I needed within a half hour bus journey from home – no need to ride the C11 all the way to a shopping city in the ‘burbs or join the masses in the West End.
It doesn’t end with shopping. When I got back from the shops I popped out to my newest local find, Chaps and Dames, to get my fringe trimmed. Just around the corner from Stroud Green Road, it is on the outskirts of another local gem. Fancy a night out but don’t want to travel far? Well, I can always pop out for a pizza at Papagones, a pint at the Old Dairy and round off the night with bowling, pool and dancing at Rowans - all within walking distance of my front door.
So, next time I need to do some shopping, get my hair or nails done and plan a night out with my mates, I don’t think I’ll travel far. Besides, it’s nice to know that I am supporting the local economy rather than taking my money to places that don’t really need it. And I don’t need to suffer the tube or cough up for a taxi either.

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