In today’s digital age, anything can be purchased online. Travel, food, soft lines, hard lines, love interests, friends, sex- you name it, it can be purchased with the ease of a credit card number. This got me thinking. Yes, it’s quick and easy, but is it preferred? Personally, I rarely shop online. Living in Toronto and working downtown, I realize I am spoilt for choice when is comes to retail options. Stealing away on my lunch break to everything Canadian retail has to offer is an activity I sometimes (frequently) indulge in. But accessibility isn’t the primary reason I shop in-store. Shopping in person provides a satisfaction that the click of a mouse just can’t beat. The thrill of the find, the atmospherics, the option to try before you buy and the instant gratification are all reasons I prefer the traditional retail experience.
Shopping to me is an adventure in itself, which also leads to discovery. An intriguing store opening in a rather obscure part of town or city is often the carrot to bait me to the neighbourhood. I explore and find new favourites (restaurants, parks, events) that I probably wouldn’t have found otherwise.
Most importantly, shopping is an escape away from my computer, which I associate (mainly) with work. In my limited amount of downtime, I’d rather be enjoying human contact and soaking in inspiration, rather than holed up behind a screen, clicking my way to a great deal. I’ll even shamefully admit that the possibility of extra savings off my purchase isn’t enough incentive for me to shift my habits. In this high-tech world, maybe I’m just an old-fashioned traditionalist, but they don’t call it retail therapy for nothing!