Every small business owner in Vermont spent much of the weekend obsessively checking the weather forecast. It kept changing from hour to hour. The Saturday morning forecast made it seem like the weather wouldn’t be bad until later in the afternoon. We had our hopes set high that the worst of it would hold off until the end of the day, as it had the day before when the first round of doom and gloom weather reports started rolling in.
I am happy to report that ice did not get the best of us, though it did create challenges. One of the biggest challenges was staying ahead of the ice buildup in the parking lot and walkways without actually hurting ourselves, so our customers could shop safely. It was a busy weekend with the sand/salt bucket. And every time we thought we had a handle on it, things got slippery again, and again.
Customers streamed inside in packs when there were breaks in the weather. So the day went from slow to slamming busy, to slow again and repeated itself over and over throughout the day. Every customer volunteered new information about the state of the roads, which in typical Vermont fashion ranged from “they’re just fine” to “I’ve never seen it worse.”
Something happened that has never happened before. I was iced in and couldn’t make it to work, so I stayed home all cozy and worked on various projects around the house. It was bliss. The store was busy, but not so busy that I was missed. Customers were happy we were open and Elizabeth and our stalwart crew who don’t have hilly driveways were on hand and ready to help.
As I headed to work Monday, in the rain, again, I knew it might be another long day, but was immediately assured by the first customer that “the roads are fine, let the shopping begin!” And she amassed a massive stack to start the day off right.