I did make it to the Freehold Raceway Mall to see that indeed the Waldenbooks was closed, with signs on the entrance warning that the Borders would open in under a month. It's remarkable how much bigger a store looks when they've simply got all the stock off the shelves. It also, I realized, changes the walking pattern for the mall: with the bookstore gone there -- and the new one opening in quite a different place -- the logical place for me to start is from the Sears end, where I always park. Having a specific place to always park may seem particularly compulsive, but I have good reason: I am particularly compulsive. And this way I don't have to remember where I left the car. But now I don't need to go past the food court and comic book shop; there's nothing I find interesting past there.
The renovations are proceeding apace too, with the old tile floor -- a tan and green pattern, so that when it was new it looked old -- gone everywhere I could find. What's left is the new white tile pattern and the various rough surfaces to be glued down. Even the Apple Store was closed for four days for ``upgrades'', although I can't tell the difference when it was upgraded; perhaps it had better memory management. Other parts of the renovation have been mildly quirky. For example, one of the side wings now has a sign just off the main walkway identifying the stores which are still open in that wing even though there's construction going on outside the closed doors. But as the side wing is a very short one, there's not much way a person can look at the sign without seeing all of the stores mentioned. So the sign provides information about something you cannot help but know if you are in a position to read it, and yet which someone apparently thought was important to call to your attention, giving it the sense of those modestly unsettling information signs which haunt Ziggy.
Trivia: Napoleon Bonaparte, after his exile to Saint Helena Island, had the complete freedom of movement within five miles of his six-room farmhouse. The house was six miles from Jamestown. Source: The Age of Napoleon, Will and Ariel Durant.
Currently Reading: King, Kaiser, Tsar: Three Royal Cousins Who Led The World To War, Catrine Clay.