There must be something special about Woolworths. At least that is what I am being told and, since I somehow managed to live through a childhood deprived of "pic'n'mix" and the likes, I can only guess what it is that turns the closure of a store chain into something of a national tragedy.
It is a busy Tuesday morning in Woolworths' Chatham branch and the shop's aisles are buzzing with customers in search of a Christmas bargain, with at least a dozen queuing at the tills, their arms heavy with sweets and toys.
Mothers with pushchairs are hurrying breathlessly past the shelves stocked with giant boxes of Cadbury and Toblerone to the faint tune of "Silent Night", past Christmas baubles, golden reindeer figures, huge stockings and big red signs announcing a "Christmas price crash".
Yet, it appears that, despite these eager shoppers, Woolworths itself is heading straight towards the crash. Shares plummeted to a record low of just 1.43p last Friday and since then there has been no doubt that Woolies is going down.
Right before Christmas, for the staff, the prospect of being made redundant certainly won't seem like one of those "perfect stocking fillers" that Woolworths tries to advertise so rigorously.
But amazingly enough, back in the Chatham branch, there is no fear, let alone despair, to be seen. But what does emerge is that many customers are already getting sentimental about Woolworths' impending downfall.
Louise Fitton's two shopping baskets are filled with family-size boxes of chocolate, sweets, and a reduced "Barbie Glamour Jet". The mother of a small boy and girl says that she has always been satisfied with the shop's offers, and stresses that she would be "deeply ashamed if Woolworths was to close down". To her, the store has been a characteristic feature on the high street ever since she can remember, a place where one could always buy "bits and pieces".
However, selling bits and pieces to a few customers proves to be not enough to keep a chain with some 800 branches across the UK alive in an age of ever more fierce competition on the high street.
Some people might occasionally pop in to buy a CD or some sweets, but the cheap deals that Woolworths became famous for over its almost centenarian history - ironic as it may seem, the store chain faces its end only months before the big celebration - don't seem to do it anymore for increasingly demanding customers.
Â Maybe there is some sort of tragedy in this indeed.