Sorry for the delay! I’m continuing from where I left off, and I also have something else to say:
Coupled with shutdown and virus fears, I’ve become even more understanding. I’ve had customers attempt to go to battle with me over the phone, before I explain the refund or freebies I’m about to give them. It feels like folks have more pent up energy to battle over nothing, due to-quadruple-shutdown fatigue. My patience has been tested on a daily basis by defensive customers. Their worry and fear causes them to act up, when they have received a promo deal late, or they think they’ve missed a potential deal. They panic and fret over the money they think they’ve lost, or money they hoped they would not have to spend. I totally understand, and am very empathetic towards them. The problem is, they act as though it’s a conspiracy against them! It can be very difficult to communicate when they are all riled up. I remind myself, that this may be their biggest problem of the week. I always keep in mind that everybody’s problems are different, and the pandemic has introduced many brand new problems to many folks. Problems that they never could imagine having to deal with. We all have our problems they say, and I try not to judge who has it the worst, but I find myself doing so. Every time I walk past a homeless person, who’s crouched down with a mug in hand hoping for change, I know that I don’t have it the worst…
As I exited with her bread, she Thanked me again, and continued to chat. I was actually ready to walk away, and go about my business, but she continued asking questions. She was curious about where I came from, and where I lived before moving here. I assumed she was curious because our short convo earlier. My perspective on this neighbourhood was pretty solid, and I told her that it was “different” when I was younger. She proceeded to explain the differences from her day on to now. I spoke freely about my family being one of the only black families on our block, but we were very comfortable. She shared with me that there was only a few on her street, back in the day. I could tell she was trying to choose her words wisely, which I found amusing. She told me that she’s been living in this neighbourhood for forty years, and that she was seventy years old! I never would have guessed that, she looked amazing for her age! She had a lot of spunk and spirit. I thought it was super cool that she cared to hear my opinion, and have a genuine conversation. As we walked towards our destination, she Thanked me again for getting her bread. I said, You’re Welcome, and it was nice speaking with you, feel free to say Hi if you see me around. She responded the same.
Although the bakery battle did not result in a verbal or physical altercation, it still had an affect on me. The last thing she said to me was in reference to that same rude lady, “I guess it’s the type of customers that frequent that place…..” I found that very interesting for a few reasons. One, she wasn’t talking about colour, race or creed. She was talking about BAD MANNERS ATTITUDE, and SNOBBERY!
Take Care, Stay safe, and Stay tuned.
Love and Respect,