Saturday, July 31, 2010


When I started ordering products for the shop I had some help from other ex-pats and *thought* I had an idea of what the Americans would want. I put my lists together, decided which items I would buy more of and which I would just get a basic selection of. I felt like I had everything under control.


I am learning every day that I am not only old, but out of touch and just clueless as to what is in and what isn't. My wish list is filling, I am making sure people understand that it is just that *wishes* and not promises. Some of the items I probably will not be able to get without having a lot of distributors. I am a one-woman show and have to realize that I can only do so much.

So yeah, I had no idea that Vegemite would be more popular that Marmite. Seriously. I have sold maybe 3 pots of Marmite and half my stock of Vegemite! Or Irn Bru, I guess there are a lot of Scots and fans of Scotland here, because I have gone through half of the case I bought in a week. I tried it this week and it is interesting: really sweet, a kicker of caffeine. It also has the reputation of being the best morning after drink, shoots those hangovers right down. Lucky Charms. I am in Germany, people. Food is much healthier here and I only bought one case of it because I figured it would be a while before I ran out. Again wrong -- half a case gone in the first week. Skittles: chemicals, food dyes, sugar and this stuff flies off the shelves; even at the price I have to charge to make even a small profit. Rootbeer, pancake mix, oh and let us not forget Brown Sauce! Again, half a case gone in the first week!

So, yeah, I am totally out of touch with food. I seem to have done a pretty good job with my book selection, though. I received some backorders yesterday and will need to do a fill order this afternoon after I close.

And should I tell you a secret? I have a book hidden under the counter, 2 copies, of a children's book that is just being released -- I cannot put it out until Tuesday. I am going to read it today, just because I can :P

more later, must restock before customers start coming in.

Interesting Customer of the Day: An older guy, handlebar mustache, American flag bandana around the neck, Confederates cap... German. He used to be part of an *Indianerclub* (Native American Club) and had a Native American name that I can neither remember nor pronouce. Ha! He stayed here a good half hour talking about his experiences and how the medicine man in the group used to spike the peace pipe with drugs. Ei yi yeah! And he had a dog named Idifix. The German readers will know about Idifix ;)

And really people, at the risk of the person finding this blog... If a shop has been closed for more than half an hour, you see a strung out woman trying to clean up the check out table and register, printing lists and such... DO NOT bang on the window and point at stuff, wanting to be let in. And if I give you a sympathetic look and shrug and sign that I am closed, DO NOT get a rage-face and send me the evil eye. I have a life, too. I HAD the door open 20 minutes after my actual closing time as I had people in the shop... I am human, please understand I cannot man the shop 24/7. If you cannot understand that I am sorry for you. Your expectations of the human race are too high.

With that, I have now been open for an entire week and a day. Things are good.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Here we go


I opened the shop on Saturday July 24th and have had some, err, interesting run-ins in the first 6 days of business -- culminating in having a Cadbury candy bar stolen under my nose today. I remember faces, though, and will ask her to pay for it if she comes in again....

It is late and people are wanting a blog from me so here are a few impressions:

-first day I was totally overwhelmed by the sheer number of visitors, customers and friends.
-have met some freakish people. Like the guy in the cut-offs, shaved head, no shirt or shoes and walking stick. In the middle of the Neustadt. Yo.
-or the kids who came in to buy things like Lucky Charms because they saw them in a movie and want to know what they taste like...
-or the people who find joy in filling my wish list with demands the first day. okay, maybe not demands but strong suggestions
-the last few days have been nice steady streams of people -- return customers and new people. It seems like my shop sign has really brought people in.
-adding in... i met an opera star, he came into my shop. he freaked at everything, like he had found american food nirvana.
-okay, I am too tired, need to go to bed. I will try to write frequently, no promises, though. Feel free to remind me to post, but dont be upset if it takes me a bit.

I am still in a bit of a dream world and feeling very surreal about it all. I have a Master's Degree in Archaeology (okay and in Literature / British Cultural Studies) and here I am the owner of a British & American shop. Ha, didn't see that coming...

Goodnight dear friends. I will work on wit and tales another day. Right now my lovely soft bed and a night cap are waiting.