Showing posts from February, 2022


  A visit to the mall always has the glitz of stores, mosaic of shoppers, cascading sounds and steps. Sometimes, one can find  even more interest on the edges. Malls all have a history. Some long and successful, but always with many transitions. Marks on the walls reflect changes over time, a replaced sign, a scrape, a restructured surface. One example of this is the parking deck at Southpark Mall in Charlotte. The interior and stores of the mall have changed many times since it was built in 1970. Owners have ranged from Belk to a Dutch Firm to Simon Properties. All have brought their own concepts with them. In the case of Southpark, it led to success with the mall now being the 10th largest on the East Coast with over 1.7 million sq ft of retail.  Still you can get a sense of the history and place by walking around the outside and parking decks where you can see how the mall structure came to together. Noting along the way wall marks of time left behind.


  I have traveled to Great Falls SC many times seeking sparks of creativity and a good photo. It’s not an easy place to pull things together. You find a scene here and there, but nothing that ties them together. Great Falls has always been like that.  Even in its heyday when J. B. Duke built a hydro-electric power plant and the Republic Textile Mill came into existence. A time when farmers left their fields and moved to Great Falls for the new style of work offered. The city grew rapidly, but in two directions. The lower part was dominated by a row of company owned stores. The upper portion, around the corner, by privately owned stores. Both sections competing with each other. All this is history now. Only two rows remain of these sections of town.  From a distance they look interesting colorful fronts. Up close though, they are empty and in decay. Only a couple of stores remain with irregular hours. No people walk the sidewalks, only a rare auto passes. It’s like everything left town,


  Rain is falling, loud enough to hear. Damping out the last light. Winter is different. Different from summer, When the light never seems to die. Where there is always something more to do. Winter is different. A quiet time, if you let it. The day measured shorter. Thoughts turn to warmth, Sips of scotch, a fireplace. A meal on the table. Winter is different. A loved one and bed to go to. The curious satisfaction of it all. The last sight of the trees, Bare now and stalwart.  Close together protecting each other. Maybe a brief glimmer of sunset, Viewed between the rain clouds. Thankfulness for the warmth around. You think these things, Not time for in summer. Winter is different. dty ‘22