Rite Aid Ghosted Me So Hard

Bella is standing with her back toward the camera, facing the ocean. She has pigtails, sunglasses, and her hands in her hoodie pockets. She looks like she's pondering life.

Yes, ghosted. Completely. This morning. Not a mere hint or warning that it’s over. Not even, ‘it’s us, not you’. Let me explain…they sure as hell didn’t.

I love my local Rite Aid at the Gower Gulch on Sunset Blvd. Yes, a lot of sketchy situations go down in that parking lot, but once those double doors open, the bright fluorescent lighting hits you, and the tune to Xanadu is on rotation in your head. Sparkling from cleanliness, the store is a fantasy of what all drug stores should aspire to be. The shelves are wide and organized. They carry loads of cosmetics and personal care products, including clothing, jewelry, and handbags. The Thrifty ice cream counter always has a neighborhood child oogling at the flavors, begging a parent for a scoop. The cashiers behind plexiglass are kind and professional – strictly making the transaction with no small talk, move along, because there’s always a line.

It’s a block over and have everything I need to avoid the dirty Galaxy Target time warp or trekking to the market. And this day and time, Target and other locals are often wiped clean (see what I did there?) of toilet paper, detergents, and other necessities. Not my Gower Gulch Rite Aid. It has a full supply of everything. They even carry a decent grocery section, including soy milk and organic boxed goods. My dog has her blood pressure medication on file at this absolutely perfect Rite Aid and while she’s no longer able to walk too far, a block over to the Rite Aid is a big, fun outing on her good days.

They do go through security guards quickly. I was thrilled the day I walked in and heard, “Ma’am, can I get you a buggy?”. By ‘buggy’, I knew he was a foreigner and from my original neck of the woods. I told him I didn’t need a buggy, but I did need to know where he’s from. North Carolina. Ah-ha! He had only been in Los Angeles for a week. While it was nice catching up with a fellow Southerner, I let him know that no one else is going to know what a buggy is, and I carried on about my shopping thinking he wasn’t gonna last long at this joint. The side street had gotten out of hand with encampments over the pandemic and was only getting worse. Plus, I don’t think NC has the kind of situations that spill over into the Gower Gulch parking lot. And he soon vanished, to be replaced by another guard, who would be replaced by another.

This afternoon I felt a little achy and worried about the flu going around, so I thought I’d enjoy this  LA rain and walk to the Rite Aid to stock up on supplies in case I’m getting sick. Then I remembered the Lotto was over a billion. I first walked to my favorite mom and pop convenient store for a ticket. I pondered just getting my sick supplies there, but thought, ‘I haven’t been to Rite Aid in a few weeks. I need to make an appearance’. As the rain picked up while walking up Gower, I turned onto the Gower Gulch sidewalk where I worked my way thru  a gaggle of 30-something men congregating among the stairs on the side of Starbucks, and a couple other men chainsmoking, on their Starbucks break-break. I noticed that new vegan smashburger place. I read the menu outside, then thought if Rite Aid doesn’t have Boca Burgers, maybe I’d try this place, as I tried to scan the Google reviews in my memory . I got to the inside corner nook and admired the big, black Doberman poster on the window of the printing place and wondered how it tied into their advertising. Okay, enough fooling around. I just need to get my Rite Aid stuff and head home before I get soaked from the rain.

I walk along the side of Rite Aid, turn left at the corner and….whoa. Closed? Was there a robbery today or something? What’s going on? Through the double glass doors, I see the metal gate pulled down, with those bright fluorescent lights peeking through, saying Hi to me. Do they close for voting day? No, tomorrow is voting day, right? I scan around the doors. There’s no sign open, closed, or sorry, we’ve moved.

A groundskeeper approached with a broom and dust pan to clean the sidewalk. “What happened? Why are they closed?” I ask him. He tells me that they closed two weeks ago. “What?!” He shrugs, he doesn’t know why, but they’re gone.

On my walk home in the rain, I wondered why there wasn’t an announcement or why the ladies behind plexiglass didn’t mention it to customers – it wouldn’t be small talk – it would be job related. They could have had a banner along Sunset – a moving clearance sale on all that overpriced garden stuff. Did the pharmacy try and text my phone to say they’re moving and to have my dog’s meds transferred, but it didn’t send because I blocked them for sending too many texts in the past?  I can apologize. Who’s gonna explain this to my dog? What about her big day out? She’s not a dog park kinda dog. I just feel blindsided, hurt, and alone. I think I need a hot bath, lingerie shopping, and a girls night out.

Ps. If you’re a fan of Noodle World at Gower Gulch, it was empty, too.





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