The Season of Vultures


There’s a guilty sense of pleasure when you are pursuing bargains in a genuinely closing down store. On one hand, you are “happy” that you can get extra things at a fraction of the actual price, but you also can’t help feeling sorry for the staff. Adelaide has been in the process of losing two bookstores within the last two months. The first one to go was the Rundle Mall branch of Angus & Robertson – a local bookstore chain here in Australia. I bought a couple of books that I wouldn’t buy full price but since everything was sold at 50% discount, I couldn’t resist picking them up. It’s sad in a way because I remember their old location at the eastern end of Rundle Mall near the old Dymock’s store before they shifted to James Place. Now there’s no more Angus & Robertson store in the Mall, except for the one in Central Market.

The second store to go is the Borders in Rundle Mall – at the moment, they’re discounting their stuff at 30% – 40% off so understandably there are a lot of bargain hunters (or dare I say, vultures?) at the store, picking discounted books, DVDs and nicknacks. I should’ve guessed their fate when they started clearing up their CD stock, followed by a massive discounting of their DVD stock, and now this … 🙁 Apparently they will close their store for good tomorrow. Very sad indeed. I did buy some DVDs during their earlier discount promotion and I also picked some Fred stuff this week. I also bought two little books about Miniature Schnauzers and Boston Terriers as I am contemplating which breed to get for an additional member of the family.

I also played the role of a vulture when Harris Scarfe was closing their store – also in Rundle Mall – as they are going to rebuild the site. At least it’s not a sad story here, as they have simply relocated temporarily until the new store is rebuilt. Yani and I only picked up two serving plates – nothing lavish. Hehehe.

I have been a Borders customer since my years in Singapore – I was pretty happy to discover about a branch in Adelaide when I moved here for good in 2003. Soon it will be gone as well :sigh:. I’ve read that Borders aren’t doing too well in the States as well. The sad thing is that both Borders and Angus & Robertson chains in Australia are managed by the same group, called the REDgroup. Bankruptcy forced them to offload their store portfolio – I thought that the local Borders store would be spared when they decided to close the Angus & Robertson store in Rundle Mall. Alas, they still need to close off more stores … 🙁

That’s the downside of greed and mismanagement perhaps – at the tail-end of the Global Financial Crisis. Now the greed has been passed back to the vultures and the shoppers, to happily pick up pieces of the carcasses in the name of bargains. I suppose it’s back to Amazon-ing for me.

Published by fuzz

I've finally relented to the lures of blogging - and for those who care, well, I'm a self-confessed geek who's a wanderer at heart, who thinks and analyses too much, and who's trying hard to hold on to his 7-year old inner persona.

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