I don’t remember how long ago I heard someone say, “I’m going to America tomorrow.” I soon learned that many on the island use the term to mean taking the ferry across and dealing with the traffic and stress of going there to run some errands and/or do shopping.
Of course, there is a recognition that the “big box” stores over there have more selection and, often, lower prices.
But for many of us, it is also important to support our local businesses. There definitely is an ethic here, that I am sure is true of other small, connected communities, that doing our part to make the local businesses successful is often more important than going for the selection and the prices at the big boxes.
We are fortunate on Whidbey to also have many businesses that make their own products (coffee, wines, foods, crafts….to mention a few), and the quality is usually excellent. To have an idea of the diversity of the business community we have on Whidbey, take a look at the Business Spotlight on Whidbey Local (https://www.whidbeylocal.com/articles/1/5243).
There is also a lot to be said for feeling good about helping someone else. I like to buy locally and know that I am playing a small part in helping a small business thrive on Whidbey.