“Anything you can reach,” was the answer a friend used to give to her kids when she was ill, or was perhaps just feeling a little lazy, and they inquired about dinner.

“Whatever we can find at Walgreens,” has become our own occasional solution to the dinner dilemma. Although ever since we discovered the tiny parking lot behind the store, discretely woven into the maze of backstreet alleys, we’ve been doing so much shopping here that we are in danger of depleting the stock.

Our neighborhood is a bit spotty lately when it comes to food shopping. Sometimes we worry we are overstating complaints about our somewhat shabby branch of a local major grocery store chain, but then we go there for such exotic items as, say, chicken breasts or milk, only to find that the delivery truck has failed to arrive. Our neighborhood Magruders recently closed, and the 7-Eleven is now a walk-in health clinic. But now there is Walgreens, which not only has milk, but beer and wine and Lean Cuisine—as well as Ben and Jerry’s ice cream, bread, and breakfast cereal. The entire food pyramid can be found in here. (Fresh fruit and vegetables, you might ask? Isn’t that what those aisles of vitamin pills are for?) And that’s not even mentioning the to-be-expected Walgreens things, like toothpaste. Or Elmo toys. Or a whoopee cushion. There’s even office supplies, although for a while there we had literally purged the shelves of HP 74 printer cartridges. Today’s visit reveals they have finally restocked.

Walgreens was the source of some tsuris in this neighborhood, or at least its location was, as the pharmacy that opened earlier this year sits on the grounds of the historic Yenching Palace. Lots of famous people signed the guest book at this Chinese restaurant, as famous for its art deco neon sign as for its roster of guests that included none other than Mick Jagger. But this is Washington, so more to the point, emissaries from the Kennedy administration reportedly met here with Nikita Krushchev during the Cuban Missile crisis; Henry Kissinger was a frequent customer, as was a virtual phone directory of wonky Washington types.

Had we lived in the neighborhood at the time, we likely would have joined the Facebook page, “Save Yenching Palace,” thereby swelling its membership to 28. We, too, have fond memories of that restaurant, the site of many a family dinner, and we feel true regret that it is gone. And yet here at the intersection where nostalgia and parking collide, well, given that the deed was long ago done, let’s just say we are enjoying the convenience.