From the journal jar, we have:
Describe the downtown of your childhood at Christmas time.
This is not one that I can do. We didn't really have a downtown that we even visited when I was young. I'm trying to think of what we did do... but there wasn't a town square or centralized part of town that we'd frequent in San Jose or Santa Clara. Now there is some stuff in downtown San Jose, like the outdoor ice skating rink. But when I was young, we visited family and friends but not a downtown area.
What about you all? Do you remember something that I'm missing? What were the surroundings like back then? And the decorations? What made the season?
We went to the mall to see Santa Claus. There were a few malls to choose from. There was Westgate, which is still there... Eastridge, and Valley Fair... Vintage Fair in Modesto... or am I getting those mixed up again? Now there's Santana Row with huge Christmas trees and snow machines and music and decorations-- it's like Disneyland, as a visiting friend said.
The places I recall spending time in for Christmas were department stores. My mom and my aunt would take us shopping. We'd go to K-mart and Mervyn's, sometimes several different locations of the same store just to get the good deals. There was a department store called MacDonlad's over on the El Camino Real at Lawrence Expressway that they liked to shop at. We'd hit a fair amount of Walgreen's too. But I remember K=mart being the main staple of our shopping endeavors.
Now it's Target. We go at least once a week. Do most of our grocery shopping there too. Soon, we'll have one right across the street from our house, pretty much. I wonder if we'll drive. I wonder if we'll have shopping carts in our yard most of the time.
I wonder what Christmas will be like in 20 years...