My son and I were trimming our Christmas tree yesterday when, at some point during the ornament hanging, I looked down at the collection of odd boxes in which the ornaments were stored and saw: Marshall Field's.
My God, I thought. That's closed. It was open for so much of my life. And now it's closed. I once bought Christmas trimmings there. I've outlived it.
I am so old, I thought. I have shopped in department stores that have ceased to exist. I have passed through the aisles of Marshall Field's, Carson Pirie Scott, B. Altman, Stern's. I don't know if I ever went to Gimbel's before it went kaput. Probably, maybe, as a teenager. I remind myself of my Wisconsin aunts, who used to regale me with tales of their long-ago visits to Milwaukee-based, one-time-powerhouse stores like Schuster's and T.A. Chapman's.