the feeling is kind of like the difference between going to costco as a kid versus going to costco as an adult.
ever since i was young, great family outings would revolve around trips to costco. i'm still not sure why we had to visit the gigantour store so frequently. but we did. and every trip was phenomenal. once we flashed our membership card at the mega fan-blower entrance, i had one of two options. i could lunge deep into the giant warehouse with my mom in search of groceries, our envelop of kodak printed pictures, and hit up all the sample stations along the way - or i could hang out front with my dad to scope out new electronics and take pictures of random people with cameras that contained no memory card. eventually we'd make our sample cart rounds but only after chilling for a bit in their leather furniture assortment. before the days of cellphones and excess minute plans, we'd search each other out among the throngs of bobbing heads and make our way towards the registers. some trips didn't even entail waiting in their notoriously long lines if we had just gone there for the fun of it! ;) everyone always left in high spirits, being completely entranced in the magic of costco.
these days, my costco trips are much much different. while the store still carries all the wonder and excitement of bygone days, the feeling is just not the same. in my 8 years of living away from home, i cannot recount any time when i'd gone to costco just for the heck of it. in fact, every trip has been missional. for days in advance, i'd carefully craft my list of necessities, strategizing how i'm going to wedge each bulk item into my 275 square feet of living space. upon arrival, i make a beeline towards my listed items and gather as quickly as possible in order to beat the growing lines near rush hour. my frantic pace leads little room for samples, much less a test run in their latest recliner exhibit. there's always a purpose for every minute i spend inside that store.. and when i leave, i leave feeling like i'd accomplished something rather than that pure joy of my childhood.
it's just not the same anymore.. even though costco will always be a place of fun and enjoyment, deep down there's this pressure of the mission and nothing i do can take the feeling away.
so many things change as you get older.