How often have you been to Kmart Rotorua?

It's been nearly two weeks since the store opened its doors, after literally years of our readers asking for it. Every time there was an empty space, a new commercial development or a call for wishes for Rotorua, the overwhelming response was "we want Kmart".

If the conversation in our newsroom yesterday was representative of the city as a whole, it seems for most the reality is living up to the hype.

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One of our team (who shall remain nameless) has been every day, bar the opening day. She's bought ironing board covers, wooden spoons and other random items she didn't know she needed.

Another has been three times, buying kids' clothes they didn't really need - 'but they were so cheap'! Yet another, who I wouldn't have picked as a serial shopper, recounted going this week and having to upgrade his basket to a trolley.

While all in good fun - who doesn't love a bargain? - it also shows what perfect consumers many of us have become.

I couldn't believe that people would queue up for hours to be among the first through the doors. I watched the video of the opening in disbelief as people kept streaming through. Did they not realise it would all still be there a week, a month later?

It's great Kmart is in Rotorua, it's given jobs to about 100 locals and gives residents another affordable option for necessities.

Yet the allure of cheap, shiny goods is proving hard to resist for many and I hope people are not buying for the sake of it. Yes those gumboots may be only $7 but if you don't actually need them, that's $7 you didn't need to spend.

Hopefully once the novelty wears off, so too will the reckless spending.

And for the record, I haven't been at all ... yet.

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