I headed down to the new Loblaws that took up residence in the old Maple Leaf Gardens today.
I have nothing but good memories of the Gardens. From the Leafs to WWF Wrestling and a few concerts thrown in, it always makes me smile to remember it. So there’s something a bit surreal about finding a big red dot marking centre ice next to the soy sauce. Aisle 25 if you’re interested in finding it for yourself.
It’s hard to stay weirded out though when you’re surrounded by what’s easily the biggest, most spacious, beautifully designed grocery store in the city. The immaculate tile typography that ushers you towards the fishmonger and butcher is definitely the star of the show for me. It’s big, bold and stunning and I’ve never seen anything quite like it before.
My only complaint is that the hot food section is a complete mess. I ended up having to buy my entrée and sides separately, amounting to multiple pieces of packaging that needed to be weighed and tagged for purchase. Plus we got shuffled around to another side of the register where people were gathering their utensils even though it made more sense for us to stand opposite them. This caused one woman to freak out, call us animals (yes she actually called us a bunch of animals) and storm off, only to turn around and decide that we were actually bitches. And she wasn’t even one of the crazy ladies that I used to see in the neighbourhood when I lived there. Not to be outdone though, the older eastern European gentlemen in front of us proclaimed that if she’d said something like that in his country, he would have punched her in the face. Good times.
But aside from their eatery bringing out the worst in people’s souls, it’s a pretty damn nice place.