Thursday, February 26, 2009

Foreclosure Ground Zero

Louis at the wheel 

Amid the bright lights of the Strip, it's easy to forget that these days Nevada holds another claim to fame besides being home to Las Vegas: Nevada is the epicentre of the sub-prime crisis that triggered the economic meltdown now gripping the world. 

We had barely to pull out of the rental car parking lot to see evidence of the foreclosure crisis. Massive signs invited you to a Las Vegas foreclosed homes auction that very weekend, while boarded up windows and carless driveways on estate after estate told their own story. 

We, too, got a taste of the trials and tribulations of foreclosed America. Our quest for a Wholefoods went awry after the branch we were searching for on a strip mall in the exurbs turned out to have shut up shop long ago. (We could have settled for a Wal-Mart but how would we have squared that with our DC arugula-munching liberal class souls? Especially as we drove past a couple of placard-bearing protesters decrying Wal-Mart's labour standards.) 

Had Louis not been mid mini-meltdown we might have popped in to check out Tesco's Fresh & Easy chain as I'd have been interested to see it. Next time. 

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