You open the door and the ring of a real bell announces your arrival. Your senses are immediately bombarded. As you take your first few steps into the store, you smell the glorious fragrance of the food counter and you hear the sound of someone filling a fountain drink. You progress through the store, searching for the bathroom or maybe looking for something in the cold case. You hear the clerk ask the patron at the check-out counter, "Do you want taco sauce with it?" Out of pure curiosity, you walk down the grocery and non-food isles. You ponder the scenarios of which a person would need the items on the shelves while you simultaneously solve the problems, "Am I going to get one or two burritos?", "Are they still serving breakfast burritos?", "Do I want Coke or Dr. Pepper?", "Should I go rogue with a corn dog or an egg roll?", and "Do you remember when you took a spit bath in here in college?"
Once you've solved your way through the rolodex of problems, you make your way to the Alter of Allsup's to chose a culinary delight to fit your fancy. The packaging is simple. The interaction with the clerk is not complicated. The in and out process happens flawlessly. It's the same as it was the last time, as it was the last time, as it was the last time.
One the most difficult things in life, for any of us, is moving past the change that inevitably happens across it's course, especially if it's forced. Our home closets are a classic example. We keep things and pack them away simply because throwing stuff away is too painful. Throwing things away means we are a willing participant in change. Keeping things the same, storing them away, revisiting them from time to time - these things feel good. It feels safe. It feels like home.
The beauty of Allsup's is that the experience doesn't change. Yes, that world famous burrito is fantastic but the burrito is not the magnet pulling you into the parking lot. What pulls you in is the blissful walk through a timeless universe. The Allsup's experience, from start to finish, feels like a piece of home every day, all day. That's why we love it.
You exit the store just as you anticipated - the smell has stuck to your clothing. And that's ok. We'll keep it.