Lubbock has always had a reputation for being a sleepy West Texas town, and it's totally justified.
Traditionally, we've always moved at a slower pace (especially in the freaking left lane) and try not to stress the small stuff. That also means taking care of your business before calling it a day, which allows local businesses and merchants to close up shop at a reasonable hour so that their employees can get home to their families. It's a noble gesture, but one that seems sorely outdated, even as we tend to "mosey" more than "motor."
However, as we see the emergence of growth and population here in the Hub City, sometimes we realize that life can happen at all hours of the day or night. The fact that Lubbock seems to roll up its sidewalks after sundown then becomes problematic.
DISCLAIMER: I have lived all over the country, and have seen a lot of different lifestyles, but I can safely say that I have never lived in a area where business such as CVS or Walgreens aren't open 24 hours. Heck, one of my best friends even works as an overnight manager at a CVS in the armpit of Florida outside of Pensacola. The concept of having those stores closed after 10 p.m. is unfathomable, yet quite the norm here in West Texas
Last night at around 11:50 p.m., I needed to make an emergency run to buy C batteries (I have my reasons) and immediately made a beeline for the closest CVS near my house on 19th Street.
Shut tight. Lights off. Thank you, come again.
I finally found a Walgreens that was closing at midnight and made a mad dash to get there just before they closed. I pulled up as they we're prepping to lock the doors. As I left, I saw two more cars pull into the parking lot only to be turned away.
What if I had an infant and had run out of formula at 1 a.m.? I'd have better luck getting her a milkshake from the Whataburger drive-thru at that time of night. As Lubbock grows, there are more and more people who need these types of services, and we need to get out of that "banker's hours" mentality. I know there are some grocery stores, etc. that are open 24 hours, but they are few and far between.
Also, for those of us who are up and need to be at work early (say 5-5:30 a.m.), if we had a need that could be taken care of before work, it's impossible for the same reasons.
Lubbock needs to understand that we live in a 24/7 society, and that more services need to be made available to 3rd shift people or those who have a pressing need to be out. And no, I'm not just talking about 7-Eleven, etc. I mean actual stores. When I lived in Southern California, I did most of my grocery shopping at 2 a.m., and it was fabulous.
The 21st century is here with 21st century needs. If Lubbock wants to pretend to be a global city, it needs to adopt some of those successful habits. Make it easy for those of us who don't have traditional schedules.