Then, I got in the habit of going down there a lot! I got my Master’s in Administration through Central Michigan University at Fort Bragg. Fort Bragg has several universities that have satellite campuses on base for their soldiers who want to get their degree while in the service. They open those degree programs up to the public. The program I took held classes all day Saturday and Sunday every other weekend. So, I was on base and in the Cross Creek area a LOT over about a 2 year period from 2000 – 2002. While I was down there, I tended to say “well, while I’m here….” and spent a lot of time in that area.
But, since I finished my degree, there was no reason to go on a routine basis. Also, the last part of my time down there the base was under the stricter security and access rules (before 9/11, access to much of the base was unrestricted and it was easier to cut through the base to get to the Cross Creek area), so a lot of what made going down there pleasant was no longer applicable. Another reason I don’t go as much is that I have started going to Cary Towne Center for my “mall fix” because they have a Macy’s – I love Macy’s!!! So — since that time, the only time I go down there is to go to Sam’s Club about this time each year to get supplies for the CIS Gala and occasional other reasons.
I went down there yesterday to make my annual CIS Gala supply run. I almost went to the Sam’s off South Saunders Road because I had stopped in at Cafe 121 for lunch and through my conversation with Chef Hamm, I thought maybe that might be easier to get to. But – I get lost in my own back yard, so decided to just go where I was familiar and not risk it! I’ll check out where the one in Raleigh is sometime when I have more time and it won’t matter if I get a little lost!
WELL — have things changed since I was there this time last year!!!! I went to Party City first – there are some supplies that are better from there! Then I went to Dress Barn and got some new tops (yeah, I know – I went for Gala supplies – so I also got some stuff for “me” – what’s the problem with that?)! Then I went to Sam’s and to the Mall (there were a couple things that Sam’s and Party City didn’t have, but I thought I might find at the kitchen gadget store in the mall – but I found that store isn’t there anymore) and Bed Bath and Beyond (where I found the gadgets I needed) after that! There is so much that is new and different – everywhere!!! New stores, new restaurants, the mall has a new look (not drastically new, but nice), and OMG – the mall now has a Macy’s!!!! They built a whole new wing and put a Macy’s as the anchor!!! Rut Ro!!!! BUT – everything still had the same easier feel to it than the malls in Raleigh have. The traffic was congested, but it is still sooooooooo much easier to get in and out of all the plazas and the mall down there! AND – the stores weren’t as crowded, either! I got parking spots right at the entrances everywhere I went and it was generally a very pleasant experience!!! It is DEFINITELY not as scenic and well landscaped/manicured and the buildings aren’t as architectually appealing, but who cares? I don’t go to look at the scenery – I go to shop! And ease of shopping is my main attraction!
So — I think my mall fix trips will be in Fayetteville once again! And I will be able to stop saying “I am so sorry I decided to go to Cary – I hate going to Cary!” ha-ha-ha