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Sunday shopping takes a hit in Europe

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ksinger

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An article from The Christian Science Monitor about European pushback against US-style capitalism - specifically our 24/7 model of retail. I tend to agree with their attitude towards Sundays, if only for the reason that I remember that Sundays during my childhood - long before they became just like any other day, were quiet and lazy. And that isn''t just the gloss added by time and distance. They HAD to be - the stores were all shut. You couldn''t run to the hardware store, or the mall. I also remember my mother thinking how vile shops being open on Sundays was, and how she thought it was rotten for the employees who never got a moment''s rest. Just one more reason NOT to work in retail, IMO.

I have of course availed myself since of the opportunity to shop on Sunday, but I find of late (last 5 years or so) I stay home more often than not, and don''t even make a small grocery run. I just don''t want to leave the house - I cook, I read, clean toilets.
Maybe it''s because I''m getting older, or maybe it''s just because I don''t feel like getting out of my comfy jammies.

Anyway, good article.

Sunday shopping takes a hit in Europe
 

Black Jade

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Thanks for posting this.

I''ve been hoping an upside to this economic pain will be people having more family time and more quality time. I remember Sundays from when most stores weren''t open, also. (I lived in New York so we would have SOME stores open because the Jewish store owners did Saturday off, not Sunday off).

I think a day of rest is important for your mental health, also.

I don''t know if the government should mandate though. I tend to think there should not be as much government interference as there is. And I don''t know if retailers would like to turn the clock back in this way. they might feel competition would get ahead of them.

When we had no Sunday shopping, I remember that we shopped less in general. MUCH less. I can remember when it was normal to buy clothes like twice a year. Back to school for fall/winter clothes and Easter for spring/summer clothes. And you bought everything you would need in one or two bigs trips that you had saved money for beforehand. There was no window shopping or just strolling around the mall looking at things for fun, with the buying all the time that a lot of people were doing, at least until last fall.

You also got clothes for Christmas.

in between, you passed things on to younger siblings (or got things from older sibling), repaired things, let seams out and hoped that you had got shoes for the kids big enough so that they didn''t grow out of them too fast.

so weekly shopping was only food shopping and if you needed something for the house, but redecorating just to redecorate was a lot less too.

and of course you kept your tv, your car (if you had one) for YEARS. The technology didn''t change so fast as now.

It probably sounds boring to younger people, but not running around shopping all the time and worrying whether or not you had the latest thing was very stress free. There was a lot of family time in the evenings, not just on weekends. We would go together to the park, ride bicyles or roller skate, our parents would walk together and talk. We played board games. When we watched a tv program, we watched it all together and then talked about it. We always had family meals. Me and my husband were talking the other day, asking how much we ate out at restaurants when young. We both realized it was only two or three times a YEAR. Mom cooked and the family all ate together when Dad got home.

What''s interesting about that is not only was the food budget easy to keep in check, with home cooking, but people in those days weren''t fat. Not the kids and not the adults. there''s no way to get fat when you eat home cooked meals which don''t have the extra calories of fats and sugar that they add to all to all fast food and restaurant food, trying to make it taste good, and don''t snack (we never snacked between meals and neither did anybody else we knew) and when you''re active, walking everyday, whether in the park or around the block or bicycling and those kinds of things. And when you relax and don''t have the stress that makes people eat and also causes health problems likeType II diabetes (which I used to have before I changed my lifestyle back) and high cholesterol (which I also used to have but got rid of just by diet, not medicine) etc. etc. Look at old photographs or the sizes on sewing pattern envelopes (sizes in store bought clothes don''t count, they sew in whatever label they think will make you buy the clothes) and you''ll see that in 1960, the biggest dress size commonly sold was an 18--but an 18 then had a 30-inch waist. This was the BIGGEST size, not the average size. Even counting that they were all wearing girdles, which take maybe an inch off your waist, these women were small--and so was everyone else, and more important, much more healthy.
 

movie zombie

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and the only night stores were open late was thursday night....but not all stores did that.

however, i must say that this was also a time in which women were working in the home and not in the paid work force. there is something to be said as a working woman to be able to get off work and still be able to get things done.

mz
 

elle_chris

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I remember discussing this with my husband back in 2004. We were in Poland, visiting his family and needed to do some basic food shopping on a Sunday. Everything was closed. His sister knew of one store that was open. We drove over an hour to get there and when we did, it was packed.

I'm not for the goverement restricitng hours or days on private store owners. If you have your own business you should be allowed to follow your own model. People, even in Poland apparently wanted to shop and this is a very religious country.

Those that believe that Sunday is a day of rest and don't shop, still won't. Store owners who agree, won't open. But why force it on others who don't follow the Christian Doctorine? I also rest on Sundays. My idea of rest though can sometimes mean shopping :)

If Europe (and I mean central and eastern europe) wants to make changes to it's economic model, they should look at their own crazy import tax, and prices.

I'll never forget this, in Poznan, Poland, I was looking for a new pair of sneakers. I usually wear Puma and there, you don't have stores that just carry name brands. You actually need to go to the company stores for the brand you want(no competiton at all). So anyway, I go to the Puma store, see my sneakers and they have them for 120 euros. Erm, excuse me??? I got them for 30 bucks on sale here. I was ready to pay up to 60, even 70, but 120 euros?? The store was dead. Much like half the stores there. I almost, ALMOST understood the crazy price due to the import tax, but Puma is a german company that's right there. It borders this part of Poland.
All I need to do is take a two drive to Berlin and get them for half. Which by the way, Poles do.
 

ksinger

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Date: 2/25/2009 10:20:43 AM
Author: movie zombie
and the only night stores were open late was thursday night....but not all stores did that.

however, i must say that this was also a time in which women were working in the home and not in the paid work force. there is something to be said as a working woman to be able to get off work and still be able to get things done.

mz
LOL! Really?? Pity my mom isn''t around to hear that. That memo apparently didn''t make it to her.
 

movie zombie

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yes, in the 50''s there were career women and then there women who like my mother worked seasonally in the canaries. but most of the mothers in our rural neighborhood in the 50''s were stay at homes.

mz

ps they didn''t get the memo that their discontent was obvious to their daughters........
 

purrfectpear

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I grew up in the 50''s and 60''s and almost every single friend I had, had a stay at home mom. The only moms that worked outside the home in the midwest were doing so because they needed the money. Of course back then there was only one kid in school who had divorced parents too
.

Moms didn''t need to shop on Sunday (family day) because they took care of that during the week when the kids were in school and dad was off to work.

Different times call for different access IMO. As for employees needing a day of rest, as far as I can tell they still get days off. No one I know is working 7 days a week.
 
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