Sunday, April 27, 2008

Scenter of the Universe

What do people do in a small town when they've seen everything they could possibly want to see, including every used and new bookstore known to man, but have a couple hours to put in before they can realistically eat dinner? Why they go to the next town over to visit the Yankee Candle Company of course!

The tagline is "Come for the Candles. Stay for the Fun!" And we sure did.
I failed to take a picture of the actual candle store part of the place. Suffice it to say, the candle store area was approximately the size of a large grocery store. There were candles and accompanying pillows, holders, etc. displayed in colour coordinated sections, in various scent combinations, and even in one memorable section, in bulk barn style with large barrels of small candles from which you can select and pay by weight.

And the smell. My goodness the smell. I don't think I've ever come so close to fainting from being overwhelmed by a stench in my life. I'm sure they are all lovely individually. But the mingling of the scents was more than could ever possibly be enough.

But the truly glorious thing about this place is that it wasn't only a candle store. No! It had a the world's largest (outside of Bronners in Michigan, I'm told) Christmas store. A truly horrifying magical world of Christmas stuff. Every kind of Stuff you could imagine.

From somewhat classy, or at least pleasing ornaments, to the horror over to the left. Ack. There is something completely repugnant about the combination of Disney and the Statue of Liberty together with the message "Liberty and Justice for All" on a Christmas ornament. I mean - the use of Mickey Mouse as a symbol of the ideal of freedom, liberty, and justice. What does that godforsaken corporate mouse have to do with any of those things???

The place was done up in Bavarian style. It was quite kitsch. In the toy/children's area they even had this terrifying moving and singing elf display, reminiscent of Chuck E Cheese's singing animatronics, singing their little hearts out about making toys all year, and generally tempting children to purchase more, and more, and more.

When we were leaving there were several families pushing completely full shopping carts out to their cars. The horror... I can't imagine the stench of those houses. Or perhaps they were stalking up on Christmas ornaments early.

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