Join Waukesha resident Brien Lee and his blog, Sir Fido, as they explore the city and report on the interesting things they find.
Email Brien at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I usually hide indoors on the Friday after Thanksgiving. I don't like shopping in general, Christmas shopping in particular, and especially not on the busiest day of the year. But this year I ventured out to see how bad it really was and to try to save $$ on doorbuster sales. Some of the stores in Brookfield opened at 4:00 a.m. but I wasn't foolish enough to go out at that hour.
Oddly enough a store in Downtown Waukesha carries one thing I was looking for so I tried there first at 8:30. Closed. As a matter of fact it wasn't too easy to find any stores open in downtown four and a half hours after they were opening in Brookfield. Plenty of parking though.
There wasn't plenty of parking at the mall. By 9:00 the lot around Brookfield Square was completely full, but I did get lucky and found a nice spot to the west less than a mile away. There were thousands of people there. The least busy person at the mall? The Salvation Army bell ringer who had a Bandaid wrapped around the clapper because someone at the mall complained about the noise. I imagined how the poor guy must have felt being ignored by thousands, as he rang his silent bell and my dropped coin hit the bottom of his empty bucket.
All in all had fun at the mall, but didn't find two things I went for. One was found at Linens 'n Things, but didn't want to buy it because I didn't bring 20% off coupon from my paper and store didn't offer extras. I could come back with the coupon later, or I could glance around the parking lot for stragglers. Instantly found one right outside the door, in the trash, saving me $20.00.
After trying many stores for the perfect gift for my son, I stopped back in downtown Waukesha to see if things had changed, and most of the stores were now open. I went into Gman Music because they carry what I was interested in and I didn't see a musical instrument store at the mall. A music store that's quiet is a little uncomfortable, but it's also nice. Nice because I really got great customer service - something hard to come by at the mall today. Not only did they help me find the perfect instrument and plug it in to demonstrate it's sound, but they gave me a great deal. A comparable package in the big box stores sell for $100.00 more than I paid at Gman. I could've kissed them!
This could've been another tale of big guy versus little and little not being able to compete on price. But instead this tale is about a little store in downtown Waukesha that offers service, selection, quality, parking, and price. Something hard to find at the mall today.