Feeling Nostalgic and Sad

When I was a teenager, Madison Square Mall was the best place to hang out with friends.  It was the largest mall in the Huntsville area.  It also had all sorts of cool stores and restaurants.

One of my favorite memories, involves me and my cousins hanging out on the second floor next to the railing that overlooked a water fountain on the first floor.  We were talking with a friend and just being goofy.

The friend was wearing a clip-on tie, because he had an interview with one of the stores.  My cousin Kay didn’t know it was a clip-on, so when she grabbed his tie it popped off and went flying over the railing.  The tie landed in the water fountain below us.

The young man was really upset, because he had borrowed his father’s tie clip and he didn’t want to lose it.

My cousin Dee and I came up with a plan to fix the problem.  We went down stairs, took off our shoes, and climbed into the water fountain to get the tie.

A security guard approached us and demanded to know what we were doing in the fountain.  I tried to explain the situation, but that just made him even angrier at us.

Dee and I were escorted out of the mall and warned not to return.

Over the years, new malls and shopping centers have come to Huntsville, Alabama.  Unfortunately, Madison Square never changed or made any significant improvements.  They still have a lot of the 80’s colors and decretive styles through out the building.

People drifted to the more modern malls that are better able to meet their needs and Madison Square Mall continued to deteriorate.

Madison Squire Mall recently closed and all the stores have now relocated.  The local news (WHNT.com)  was showing pictures of the empty mall and talking about future plans for the building and the land.  Looking at the pictures made me feel nostalgic and a bit sad.

15 thoughts on “Feeling Nostalgic and Sad

  1. koolaidmoms says:

    It looks like all the malls all over the country that are closing. So, sad. Many of us spent great times, such as you, in these malls. Thank you for sharing the pictures and story.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. desertcurmudgeon says:

    There’s an appealing sadness to the shells of dead shopping malls. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it’s almost like the ghosts of countless people in the midst of hype-driven materialistic pursuits are still there, wondering where all the stores have gone. The band Modest Mouse, back when they were weird and noisy and unfit for radio play, had a song called “Teeth Like God’s Shoeshine”. The chorus contains the lines:
    “Well, do you need a lot of what you’ve got to survive?
    Here’s the man with teeth like God’s shoeshine
    He sparkles shimmers shines
    Let’s all have another Orange Julius
    Thick syrup standing in lines
    The malls are the soon to be ghost towns
    so long, farewell, good-bye.”
    For me, that captures quite poetically the dead mall magnetism that I am far less capable of putting into words. Remember: someday the new flashy malls that have taken the place of Madison Square will succumb to the same fate and someone else, years from now, will feel nostalgic for their former vibrancy.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. No fair hanging us out to dry like that. We need, in the words of “Paul Harvey” (although that might be before your time) “And now for the rest of the story!”
    But I see by other comments – others like me wanted to know if you reclaimed the tie clip and whether or not he got the job and you responded accordingly.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I think since you went to Madison Square Mall frequently you should recall all the fun times….I used to live in Nott Ngham UK and one of my favourite malls is Victoria Centre,….while there in Sept 2016 on holidays I returned to shop Victoria…while there’s new stores there’s still the older ones. The Central Market still exists as do some great memories of me, my friends and family shopping together gether. One friend Sylvia always met me there along with her mum and several of her sisters. While Sylvia’s mum Mrs Svilts and her sister Barbara are both together in heaven, I think of the good times together…hopefully there will always be Victoria Centre and it’s not demolished….sad tho you were not successful in retrieving the tie and got turfed out of the Mall!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. did the grown ups ever tell you it would be this way? that we would be sad when the old mall, the old house, the old school…suddenly is worn out..then abandoned? it is a sobering reminder that bodies themselves wear out, and the old body will one day be abandoned. a bit morbid, I know.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Reblogged this on Creatively Me and commented:
    Lynn Thaler: I do know the feeling of nostalgia but, I also know of a mall that was a major hot spot everyone came too and it was connected to Sears & Roebucks and similarly but, now its just an empty dusty parking lot waiting for some developer to bulldoze it. Another note but, technology related I remember the day they pulled up all the pay phones of the corners cause everyone has a cell phone or smart phone as they call them now a days and also we don’t have newspaper stands except those free car advertising to sell cars just empty stands broken sitting on the curbs. Are they going get rid of physical books next then I will turn activists and start protesting.


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