I'd been there before, for soda. There are Pepsi vending machines all over the convention center. And for some reason--influx of gamers perhaps?--they are often empty during Origins. One of the best deals for drinks used to be buying a plastic cup from Subway that could be refilled for something like 50 cents. I haven't seen those in a long time. I took to getting my drinks from North Market, where I could grab a big, ice cold bottle of Pepsi from the fridge at Best of the Wurst on my lunch hour. In the humid Midwest, a bottle of Pepsi isn't ice cold for long. I'd buy one, eat lunch, and find it warm to the touch before the first dice rolled in the afternoon session--maybe half an hour since taking it out of the fridge.
Okay, so that much soda isn't healthy, anyway, but in the summer in the Midwest when you're doing a lot of talking--like talking for eight hours running HackMaster--thirst happens. I found a water bottle with a filter last year that solved a lot of those problems. I also give myself a pass on 100% healthy eating during conventions just for the fact that, hey, it is a vacation. We can't be good all the time. When the soda machines turned up empty, and I didn't have time to run through the heat back to the market, I'd go to the convenience store. And as much fun as the market is, the convenience store is fun, too.
It reminds me of the drugstore Face and I shopped at when we went to Oahu, Hawaii. It has something of everything, including the wine and the walking sticks. Then there are:
- stuffed animals
- office supplies
- drugs (ibuprofen, aspirin, small stuff like that)
- novelty gifts
- cell phone charms
- snack foods
- beer (super expensive--a 6-pack of Leinenkugel's Summer Shandy was 17.99!)
The cell phone charms hooked me. There was one, two years ago, a lucky cat with a little bell inside. Face bought it for me. I put it on my badge holder and left it there even though I always jingled when I walked. I have an iPhone, which does not have a place to put a charm, but this year I went home with three more lucky cat bells attached to my Pelican dice box.
The drugstore in Hawaii had a great assortment of random things, too. I know that's why I like the one in Columbus. I spent way too much time wandering around before I found my new lucky cats, but that is okay because of Hawaii. And, for future reference, they always have cold sodas in the fridge.
*nope, total skeptic