Toy and antique show memories.
A thread in the customs forums got me thinking about the toy, doll and antique shows and stores I went to as a kid.
In the 70s and 80s I went to a lot of toy, doll and antique shows, flea markets and antique stores with my parents. My mom and I were really into it and my dad was honestly bored out of his gourd most of the time.
It was really a different vibe back then than it was in the last big show I went to in the late 80s. When I first started to go to the shows the doll and toy dealers were all women. There were very few men at the shows. Maybe a few bored husbands, like my dad, and a few embarassed looking male collectors. There really wasn't this concept of action figure collectors back then. Megos, Captain Action and GI JOE were dolls and little kid's toys. It was the norm to see 12 inch GI JOES, Star Wars and Mego WGSH on display side by side with Barbie and Madame Alexander dolls.
I remember it was a much more laid back vibe at shows at that time. Not as loud or competitive. People weren't scrambling all over the place casing the dealer tables to get that killer buy before another collector beat them to it. It was just a fun relaxing way to spend a saturday afternoon. You, know, I really miss it.
The last show I went to, probably late 89 early 90, the vibe had totally changed. Male sports card dealers had moved on to selling toys and the place was packed with male action figure collectors. It was loud, it was hot, it was crowded, it was hectic, it was smelly and people were rude. It just wasn't as much fun as it has used to be when I was little.
Of course, your mileage may very. But that's how it was for me.
You are a bold and courageous person, afraid of nothing. High on a hill top near your home, there stands a dilapidated old mansion. Some say the place is haunted, but you don't believe in such myths. One dark and stormy night, a light appears in the topmost window in the tower of the old house. You decide to investigate... and you never return...