The feared rush on stores never came, but many retailers reported heightened Y2K buying activity in items such as bottled water, canned products, paper goods, prescription refills and batteries. That, twinned with holiday purchasing of deli items, amounted to a burst of sales for many retailers. At Food Lion, Salisbury, N.C., Chris Ahearn, a spokeswoman, said, "Sales were pretty normal, up until the two to three days before New Year's. The biggest pull for us was drinking water the last ...

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