Friday, 11 September 2009

Shop Girl Story

The nicest thing happened to me today.
A customer came in and bought a bulb for £1.00.
Wait, that wasn’t the best bit, although it pays for half a Greggs’ sandwich.
I had a BLT by the way. (That’s ‘bacon, lettuce and tomato’ for my foreign readers).
I’ve been waiting for them to make a BLT for four years. Up until now they’ve always added chicken.
Bacon and Chicken. They don’t match in life and even less in death.
‘Too cold,’ Mum always says, about their sandwiches.
And then we splurge on a Parma ham Panini, which Mum prefers on ciabatta and tells them to squash really hard.
Back to the woman who bought the bulb, the highlight of my day.
‘I love your blog,’ she said.
And a light came on inside me.
A 100 watt bulb, to be precise.
A bulb which may be banned according to the Evening Standard but a bulb that I will keep defending in this blog as the best light in the world, apart from inner light, which we don’t sell.
‘I left a comment when that guy said horrible things about your blog,’ she continued.
She meant that Californian bloke, back in April who said I was one of the ‘most uninteresting and mundane’ people he’d ever encountered.
I’d felt so touched when people had left supportive comments and sent me e-mails.
She told me her daughter was too star struck to come into the shop.
‘No!’ I cried, gobsmacked.
She must’ve been exaggerating. Stardom seems a very long way off.
I’ve spent the last three days covered in dust.
I thought the shop needed a make-over so step by step, I’ve re-hung the ceiling.
After my customer of the £1.00 bulb goes l feel like a different person.
Refreshed, renewed and like everything makes sense again.
You see, I didn’t post my last blog because it was too melancholy.
Mid-twenties angst and all that.
‘It’s underrated,’ Rosie says. She’s also been suffering from it.
It’s not as well documented as the mid-life crisis but obviously it’s real because we’ve both had it.
My cousin’s antidote to the crisis is to go travelling.
‘Interesting,’ I say, when she tells me over dinner. ‘When?’
Customers come in and talk to me. They talk about their illnesses, their family, houses, debts, retirement.
Last week I might’ve glazed over but today I listen.
I listen because the lady of the £1.00 bulb has awakened my excitement for the Shop Girl story.
Without people there’s no story.
‘Which country are you going to first?’ I ask my cousin.
Supposedly we’ll be closed in January.
I’m not yet sure what will happen to Shop Girl.
But I know it’ll be okay.
After all there must be lots of stories to be had in India.


Anna said...

Oh there are wonderful stories Ems!Come!

Helen Abramson said...

Chicken and bacon are THE PERFECT MATCH. They are my friends. The belong together. *sob*