Friday, February 26, 2010

store hours

It’s quiet in the shop on cold evenings. Occasionally someone will stop by, purchase our most soothing item, chat a little, and reluctantly push the door to the bitter cold again.

For the second night in a row, I’ve had friends stop by. That’s always exceptionally pleasant. A chance to exchange a few words before they, too, push the door and head out.

Late, just before closing, an unlikely customer stops by. In retail, you have to expect this – the person who looks like no customer you’ve ever helped. This guy is young, bearded, with dreadlocks reaching way past the shoulder blades. A winter cap is pulled low over his head. I would have readily bet my paycheck that he was here to get warm and not to buy. And so, after brief introductions, I let him browse.

He asks questions – pointed questions about product X or Y. And eventually, after I open jar of this and point to a jar of that , we settle in on one item, I mumble the price, thinking for sure that would be the end of it.

The visitor tells me -- I'll take it. And I wrap it for him to take home.