The other day I went into our local hardware store here in our quaint Little town of liverpool Nova Scotia where like all other little towns throughout the World ,everyone knows everyone. It is hard to be in a grumpy, leave me alone mood when you run into and are helped in these stores by such wonderful people who you grew up with ,whether old buddies or you just know them from shopping but always a smile and most times a joke or two is shared with these people. Well this day I was looking for something and while talking with the clerk he said to me"do you remember when you worked here when it was "People's Dept. store " back in the late 60's ? Well I had to laugh because I was just thinking about that when I was limping down those two flights of steps that day, I actually was remembering back when I ran up and down those steps many times a day back then ,I worked in the toy Dept. what fun we all had working in that store. My Mom worked there as well and I worked right beside her, she was on cash and my toy Dept. was right next to her and I bagged for her when she was busy, so many times people would remark how well we worked together and how much fun we had , when they found out we were Mother and Daughter ,they were impressed. I am happy to say I got to know my Mom during our time working together and I believe she enjoyed working with me, I know I gave this poor wonderful woman many headaches in the past. Yes little old now me :-)
So this clerk and I got to remembering and telling a few fun stories from back then and we shared a couple of these with one of his young coworkers and she was amazed at some of the things that went on there back then .
This store had many Depts and there was a person assigned to each Dept. They had a Pet Dept. and I can remember once they had a Skunk for sale another time they had a Squirrel Monkey, now I will admit right now before I get into my story , I do not approve today of these animals being sold and put into captivity . But lets get back to a fun story, one morning my mom was on checkout upstairs in the very front of the store which is now Home Hardware ,they had little square cubicles and counter which the cashier would go in and close and latch a little hip height door behind them. There she was all cozy and ready to open her register when this Squirrel Monkey came out from under her register where the bags were kept, well lets just say you could hear her squeal from all over the store and she jumped over the closed door. From the look of the stock room the Monkey had been out all night.
Another day, one of the girl's was trying to catch a budgie bird for someone, remember these Budgies? they came in green, yellow or blue, At times folk's would say I want that blue one over there, well they are pretty well all alike and we would catch what we thought was the one they wanted when then they would say,"no,not that one,that one" to have us there for God knows how long trying to net the right blue bird, well this one day a couple Budgies got out during this procedure and the girl who had the fabric Dept which was on the other side of the back of the store ,come to find out very quickly ,she was petrified of bird's and guess where these bird's took off too, yup,the fabric Dept. Well she grabbed whole bolts of material held them over her head while screaming and running away, well you should have seen all the commotion, it was just way too funny, I can't remember how we caught them in the end.
Another time , the manager who really liked Mom and enjoyed teasing and joking with her.Mom came into work one morning and again went to open her register and when she did a bunch of rubber snakes popped out when she opened the cash drawer. We were always doing silly fun things like that ,it was a different time and more people worked there ,now just a few look after the whole store .Oh, I made 96 cents an hour back then, yup, but I did get a raise :-)
A dear friend of mine worked there and she had the bra Dept. upstairs, one Friday night while we all were going around tidying up our Depts. killing time waiting to leave and go home for the night, she had an odd looking man in her Dept. she was keeping an eye on him from afar, every once in awhile he would kind of jump . When he left she went over to where he was and there she found a bra on the floor with a footprint on it, well we had fun with her that night, she had to walk home alone and she was a big breasted lady , we teased her saying for her to be careful of the bra stomper on her way home, today we would walk with her. A different time indeed.
Remember "Crazy Glue"? One Friday night, a couple young boys were looking a bit guilty and Mom told me to go keep an eye on them. The boys left and a while later we got a call from the Manger , come to find out the Boys stole the crazy glue and went to the movie at the Aster Theatre , one of them stuck his hand to the back of the seat in front of him and the Movie Manager had to pri him loose and finally the boy's admitted that they stole the glue from the store, I missed it.. whoops...
In my last story about Summers on the farm when I was a child, I mentioned about how I love a barn smell ,well Friday evenings at this store was my favorite time to work, folk's would come in from the country and even though these farmers probably had on their good town cloths on, I could still smell that lovely barn aroma coming from them.