Shopping in Mathews is an exercise in imagination and is limited to the following: the Big Grocery Store (defined as having more than 3 aisles and the largest selection of beef jerky), the Smaller Grocery Store ("We Sell Pigs'Feet"), the Convenience Stores ("We Are All Things To All Hunters and Fishermen"), a couple of cute gift shops, and yard sales. (This is where the imagination comes in: You must imagine that you're browsing through the discount racks at Department Store of Your Choice to enhance the thrill of the shopping experience.)
Last but not least, there is....(insert sound of angels singing)...Dollar General.
As a child, I secretly loved the Dollar General but was too embarrassed to be caught DEAD going into it. In my twisted little world, I thought Dollar General was for poor people (hello, we weren't exactly wallowing naked in cash) or for people with no class (I might have resembled that remark). Or common sense (ditto). This was quite the conundrum because I actually did a large part of my clothing shopping at Dollar General (after donning a hooded jacket, dark glasses and moustache to slither in undetected). I loved all the comfortable polyester that was not only cheap, but super dirt cheap. And tacky, as in Do Not Pass Go, Go Directly to Fashion Prison...for life.
Looking back, none of it makes sense. I didn't want to be seen walking into Dollar General yet I wore their clothes to school every day. And most people with two functioning eyeballs could tell where the polyester slightly irregular pants with an elastic waistband that lasted exactly two weeks came from. So, the secret was out.
Now that I've matured (read: don't give two hoots about what anyone thinks and in fact go out of my way to prove it), I openly ADORE Dollar General and go there as often as I can without being arrested for loitering. You can buy just about anything there: milk, energy drinks, batteries, nurses' smocks (I'm not a nurse, but it is comforting to know that if I were one, I could buy uniforms there), silly putty, salt and pepper shakers shaped like farm animals, litter pans, fresh, clean Haynes underwear, flip-flops (or ship-shops as a friend calls them) Pantene shampoo, reading glasses, hair extensions, kitchen sinks and best friends for life.
OK, so they don't sell hair extensions. Or kitchen sinks. But you can get all the rest there and still have plenty left over for your next shopping excursion.
At the community yard sale.