A gloomy morning in Twin Falls, Idaho

Maybe people are tired of picking up cheap Chinese knickknacks. Maybe people have decided that being trampled isn’t fun. Maybe more and more people are shopping online. The latter was a theory on which the receptionist at the checkout and I agreed. She explained that Friday mornings were not as busy as she and her fellow associates at Walmart expected.

Although you wouldn’t have known it from the traffic in the parking lot at 5:15 am, I parked near Cheney Drive and was happy to find a parking spot. I wasn’t looking for ten dollar toasters or 99 dollar televisions. I needed some shopping. I forgot to take my list Thursday morning and didn’t buy the garbage bags and distilled water that I needed. I picked up these items today, along with potato salad, buns, and cat food.

Easy grocery shopping

The Walmart grocery store was wide open. You could have fired a cannon in the cheese and meat alley and not hit anyone. When I approached the pet section, I noticed the other end of the store was busy. Lots of people with carts full of really big boxes. They didn’t seem in a rush and most of the people I met weren’t.

At the checkout, I saw something that I rarely see. Most weekend mornings only one checkout is occupied and most customers are directed to self-service. All the staffed checkouts were open but the employees just stood there politely and waited for business.

Online sales are booming

Walmart is increasingly slipping onto Amazon when it comes to shopping for items online. Over the past 15 years, I have also found that the turnaround time for items I ordered by computer is one day! My clerk explained that this is because the item is often already in the store or can be shipped from a nearby store.

The day will come when most of the purchases will be done online and increase the margins, even very many success stories. brick and mortar stores will close. For now, I really enjoy the mornings chatting with friendly employees.

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