Today Ikea opened their first store here in North Carolina, home of the furniture mart. It's probably a sign of the times that the Lego of the furniture industry is opening a store here in the capital of the US furniture industry to great fanfare.
- The food in the cafeteria is pretty good and pretty cheap. We used to pig out on the meatballs and they had some kind of crazy fruit soft drink that we all loved. I think it was something like pomegranate, but whatever it was it was very light and un-syrupy.
- If the store in Charlotte has a children's play area that allows you to sign your kids in for a 1/2 hour of supervised play time while you shop then you should definitely take advantage of it. But be forewarned that within a week you're definitely going to be dealing with some strange illness that involves a lot of snot flowing from your child's nose. Personally I always found it to be a fair trade.
- If you buy any furniture that requires assembly, and I think that is all the furniture that Ikea sells, then you need to familiarize yourself with the metric system and odd looking tools that look like something out of a toddlers play tool set. You also need to set aside triple the time you think it should take to assemble the furniture.
- Don't go if you don't like primary colors. Ikea's big on primary colors.
- Finally, just because it's Ikea doesn't mean the other customers will behave any better than they do in other stores. In fact in Ikea most people tend to get lost which means they act even worse than usual, so paste on the happy face and just roll with it. If it helps just imagine yourself at the DMV before you enter which should get you in just about the right state of mind.
Enjoy your shopping experience!