Chico’s Parking Lot at Magazine and Joseph

So when I first moved to New Orleans, the only grocery store I knew about was the Winn-Dixie on Tchoupitoulas, the regular grocery of my department chair/tour guide. I went there upon arrival to get a few things to make a first dinner in this city I hadn’t even visited before rolling up in the Hyundai Accent a few days before. There were no fresh tomatoes at the Winn Dixie. In August.*  I was complaining about this to my brother, who told me to find the fancy store. There would be a fancy store with fancy produce, he promised. And there was–the Whole Foods, Uptown on Magazine and Arabella. Across the street from the Whole Foods was a Chico’s, and the place had this huge parking lot with a sign proclaiming it reserved for, of course, customers of Chico’s. They even had a security guard who sat out there all day long, waiting, I guess, for somebody to park there and then cross the street to go to Whole Foods. There was never anybody parked in that lot–I mean, does the neighborhood really have the customer base to support a stand-alone Chico’s? Well, Pinkberry moved in a few weeks ago, and they share the parking lot. It’s always full, now. We’ve most definitely got the customer base to support a Pinkberry. And it was full again tonight when I took the road bike out for pizza with K. I snapped this picture, briefly considered Pinkberry catering since everybody seems to like it so much, and then dashed under an overhang to wait out yet another flash thunderstorm. I rode home in that delicious post-storm breeze, happy to know how to get to all kinds of grocery stores. It’s good to be home.

** Total anomaly! Winn-Dixie almost always has tomatoes.

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