Thursday, September 2, 2010

The Perks

This gig here, my shop, has a few small perks, but also a few fantastic perks. Like meeting all kinds of foreign artists living here and working in the states opera house. this week alone i have had 6 ballet dancers, a violinist and an opera singer. Really! They are so nice and really funny about some foods. Flipping out at the sheer sight of chocolate chips. Whoa.

Okay, I was going to write a lot more, but am freaking out a bit. For the first time since I opened the shop I felt scared by a customer. For the most part my customers are sweet, silly people either expats or people who have travelled. Absolutely harmless. An Arabian or Turkish guy just came in, though, and asked for a large bag and then with broken German asked about honey. I explained I don't have honey, but told him where to get some. When I finally got it across to him he grabbed me in a hug and gave me a big wet kiss on the forehead. He kept telling me I am a beautiful woman and asked my name and was just very very creepy :/ I need to work on my bad-ass look. Like really really work on it!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Blog Lazies

Well look at that! The blog-lazies have already hit. I won't admit to being totally lazy, though. I will hide behind the fa├žade of having had a busy week last week. Sounds much more business-like.

On the topic of business like and abilities: I have been having a good laugh (with customers, to boot) in the last week over the fact that I am so not the business type. I am a cultural historian, really, with a side of language and literature. How on earth did I come to owning a business? It boggles my mind on more levels than I am willing to admit. And, much to my disdain, I am STILL waiting on the first 4 months payment of my state funding. I will continue to call *those people* until I get it. By then, they will probably owe me for the first 5 months. Boo. I need the money to be able to buy more shelving and to finance another American order -- and SOON!

This past week was filled with waiting for my 2nd order to arrive from the UK and then dealing with the order, itself. I was told it would arrive Monday or Tuesday. Tuesday afternoon I received a measly 1 small pallet -- with my specialty goods. That was dealt with quickly. I asked where the other pallet was and no one knew. It must have been hiding, but luckily they did find it and were able to deliver it on Wednesday. In the end, I think it was better to have them arrive on different days, as the work of off-loading the pallets was split. By Thursday morning everything was in the shelves both in shop and in storeroom and the boxes were broken down.

I am already selling out of items again, though. It just amazes me to see what flies out the door! I received a case of no-name root beer on Wednesday and by Saturday I was down to 4 cans. Seriously? The first time around it took 2 weeks to sell that much. Dr. Pepper: a third of my case gone in the same amount of time. People seem to realize how quickly some items sell out now and have begun hoarding. They come into the shop, look left and right with beady eyes, grab armfulls of their food-crack and shuffle quickly to the check-out counter all the while protecting their stash from the wandering eyes of others. Maybe I should install a privacy shield around the counter...

Aside from that, things are really moving, especially for just completing my first month of business. I spent the morning putting together 3 smaller orders -- 2 from smaller distributors in Germany and mostly for drinks. The dire need for things like Dr. Pepper, A&W Rootbeer, Mountain Dew, Welch's Grape Soda, British Ales and Ciders is ever growing and I need fodder for the masses. I also am finally ready to place an order for hot sauces and such from an American company.

And let us not forget all of my Aussie customers / Australia fans who see that I have Vegemite and come in begging for ** of Tim Tams or Cherry Ripe. It is beyond funny what these people are willing to do to get them! I think if I asked for their first-born that some would actually trade.

For the most part, I have fabulous customers, there are a few that make my head spin, though. They find my selection of 400 products (give or take) and books too small and need about a gazillion other items that I cannot or do not want to get. I am sorry, but I can only cater to so many different tastes. These types make my day less than brilliant -- fortunately they are not many.

I think that is as much as I can manage to write today. Once I get my orders placed this week, I should be able to think about writing again. Until then, I will try to keep my stories fresh in my mind.

No promises.