Saturday, 25 October 2008
Day ? - lost count
Looking back, my last entry was Tuesday, so quite a lot to catch up on...
Tuesday was a big day given that we were reopening on Wednesday, and there was a final Big Push late into the night. I'd like to say we were working on the finishing touches, but in reality we were miles away from the finishing touches phase. We were still on the essentials: a doorway clear enough to walk through and stock on the shelves... Tuesday evening none of these things were in place and anyone trying to shop at Cottontails would have had to fight their way through a heap of discarded shelving and power tools only to sort through box after box of disorganised, unpriced toys and clothes. They might even have had to rummage through my car given how much stock was still in transit from home to shop!
However, I worked late - very late - and it's amazing how things come together when you keep plodding on. We were able to open the door at 10am on Wednesday and feel quite proud of what we had achived. Things weren't quite finished but without doubt the shop was a far, far lighter, brighter and happier place. It feels fun. It feels sort of festive. In fact, it feels the way I have always wanted my shop to feel. I am very happy.
Even today - Saturday - there are still things that need finishing - the odd shelf that hasn't been filled, the open / closed bunny sign in my handbag awaiting fresh lettering, and I don't know what became of our new mat-well. But we are 90% there now, and have been able to trade perfectly well for the last four days. In fact it's been busy and lively in the shop and that's a really promising sign.
The reopening hasn't been without its trials though - it's been one hell of a job catching up, and on Wednesday morning - five minutes after we opened - we took delivery of a 6' high pallet of toys from Moulin Roty. I could have wept. The last thing I wanted was to have to pile box after box on to my nice new shop floor, let alone deal with the many customer orders the delivery contained. I wanted to skip around tweaking things, not battle with cardboard, bubblewrap and parcel tape. Mind you, such was my determination to clear the shop floor that I don't think we have ever unpacked an order with such speed!
Oh, and just one more thing before I head off for a much deserved day off: remember the lovely clean and sparkly carpet? A little boy weed on it on Thursday!