Painesville Co-Op – story one
I had just come out of the mens room at Painesville Co-Op. Right outside of it is a bulletin board where ads are posted for either wanting to buy or selling your collectible. I was looking over the ads when my phone rang. I answered it. The call was from the Antique Co-Op. I was a bit confused as I have spaces at both the Wickliffe and Painesville Co-Op.
The lady calling wanted to know the price of an item I had. It was obviously mislabeled. When she described what it was I immediately realized this was Painesville calling. Without letting on I was there I slowly walked up to the desk while talking to her still on my phone. Finally I got so close she got startled. She laughed and hung up.
The item was a card holder, sort of like a recipe box but instead this was filled with cards describing house plants and how to care for them. Somehow we mislabeled it as Arnold Schwarzenegger. I said well obviously Arnold must be labeled as the card holder.
I told her the price was ten dollars. Perfect that was what the customer was willing to pay. She hollered the price to the customer who was just checking out. The customer yelled back I'll take it.
Painesville Co-Op – story two
This past Thursday was my last day at the Painesville Co-Op. I was busy wrapping up my stuff. Each customer I greeted with - This is my last day, if you see anything you like make an offer. I had only a few more items left to wrap when a gentleman walked by.
I said there is not much left unpacked but if you want to make an offer please do so. He was not looking to buy anything he was just browsing the store. He asked what will I be doing now. I replied this is only for extra money but I am going to another store. I handed him my janitorial flier and the postcard advertising my book. He was curious about the book but before he said anything more about it he said if ever in Salamanca, NY check out their antique mall.
I replied I know all about that mall and went on to tell him the story of my fathers connection to Salamanca. He was impressed and said sounds like the start of another book or at least write 100 words, people would find it fascinating.
We then made formal introductions and went back to talking more about my book. Tom is close to retiring and is starting a new business.
What is Tom's new business? It is a website devoted to books called http://books2hear.com/goog_1741685038">. We shook hands and both of us were on our way.
Wickliffe Co-Op - story three
Saturday I briefly stopped in the Wickliffe Co-Op. I wanted to drop off a few items to be placed in my booth. I walked in and headed directly towards my space when a saleswoman passed me with a salt n pepper shaker. I recognized it immediately as the set I was selling and that she didn't have the complete set.
I said Ma'am excuse me but there is another piece to those. The customer was still standing besides my display. He thanked me because he would have left with out both pieces.
Grafton - story four
Saturday was a memorial for a friends son in Avon Lake which is almost 40 miles from my house. A day before the memorial I was informed there was a landscape/garden center accepting barter in Grafton which is closer to Avon Lake than my house. I first went to the garden center. Afterwards instead of heading immediately to the memorial I told Ruth its been years since I was in the little downtown, if you could call it that, of Grafton so lets go there next.
I parked on Main Street and took a walk looking through windows of closed and open businesses and those vacant. Sitting on a bench was an elderly woman. She asked what are you looking for? I said what ever I can see, like you. Actually I haven't been here in years and was reminiscing of the stores I remember. I also thought of walking the railroad tracks to find the board with my DNA on it.
One time I was walking the tracks looking for old bottles I slipped and when I stood up I had a board with a nail on it stuck to my ass. She laughed and said well one time I was sitting on the couch at home. Besides me was a plate of food. I stood up and felt something. My sister said Hey you have a pork chop bone sticking in your butt. We laughed and proceeded to reminisce about the stores that were on Main Street.
Some I remembered like Durkees which was a fabulous place with all kinds of knickknacks and gadgets. Other stores the lady remembered I had no recollection.
The original mill that was right on the edge of the rail road tracks and Main Street was demolished. What remained of the old grain silo was moved about 50 yards and I believe is just there as a historic marker.
Outside of town corporations have invaded which is draining Main Street even more, I guess like in Everywhere USA.
The ladies name was Verline. She is a widow and sits on the bench on Main Street just about every day witnessing to people about Christ. She told me how she tries her best to lead the young to God. Everyone has a purpose and no one is useless not matter how old or what condition you're in. Verline found hers.
I told her about my book and she immediately wanted one. We needed change so I went and bought her a pop. I signed the book this way... Only in America can you talk to strangers about things that got stuck in your butt. God Bless.
If ever passing through Grafton look for Verline on Main Street, stop and say hi. If you don't your visit will be incomplete.