62 Days of Summer
“Excusez-moi,” said the lady in the pink shorts.
“Oh, pardon me,” I replied.
When it happened, we were both distracted, our heads spinning in a shoe-shopping frenzy at the Adirondack Outlet Mall.
Crammed into a narrow channel with hundreds of cardboard boxes, I was squeezing my feet into some Tevas sports sandals and she was pushing her tootsies into a pair of cute black slides, when our backsides accidentally bumped.
We couldn’t speak each other’s language, but we both had bargain-hunting fever.
I could see it in her eyes.
On a rainy summer day or when the thermometer hits 85 in my non-air-conditioned house, I like to zip up to Lake George and shop at the outlet stores.
Off Exit 20 of the Northway, this retail conglomeration is formally known as the Factory Outlets of Lake George and informally dubbed “the Million Dollar Half Mile.” There are more than 55 stores, from Banana Republic and Brooks Brothers to Yankee Candle.
Situated in the 6-million-acre Adirondack Park and minutes away from one of the most beautiful lakes in America, the outlets can seem like an incongruous chunk of commercial chaos amid a landscape known for its mountains, rivers and trees.
But the outlets are here to stay, and with more construction underway, this shopping area is getting even bigger.
Any day now, we can expect an announcement of the names of a dozen new stores, which are expected to open this fall.
Meanwhile, shoppers heading north this summer will notice three new stores at the Log Jam Outlet: Jos. A. Bank, Christopher and Banks, and Talbot Clearance. The Coach Factory Store also has doubled in size.
At the Adirondack Outlet Mall, where I like to shop, the interior has been remodeled, with new bathrooms, dining and tourist information areas.
On the day I ran into the lady in pink, I picked up bug repellent at the Coleman store, two dresses at VF Outlet, a pair of khaki shorts at Eddie Bauer and the sports sandals — all for less than $100.
Next time I go shopping in Lake George, I’m thinking about trying a French phrase or two.
“Ces chaussures sont en vente,” I could say to the lady in the pink shorts. “These shoes are on sale.”
Have a favorite summer activity? Let us know about it. Share your ideas for Summer Days at www.dailygazette.com/summerdays or firstname.lastname@example.org.