The Final Days

RaphaBooks closes its doors day after tomorrow. Do I feel sad? Yes. It’s been a wonderful three years and I’ve met so many great people. Do I have regrets about closing? Nope. Not even one. Am I excited about the future? Absolutely! I can’t wait to see what God has in store.

These final days in the store have been – well – interesting. Seems like the words Closing Sale bring out the worst in people. I hope you will indulge me one last customer “appreciation” blog post. Enjoy!

You’d love the customer who made a purchase for $3.81 and wanted to pay with a $100 bill – I said no. I didn’t have much more than that in the cash drawer.

Nearly every customer who comes in says, “So you’re closing out?” Duh. That’s what the sign says.

I can’t tell you how many customers think that because I am closing out I should give them an even better discount than the 40% off they are already getting.

One particular customer has been in every day this week to buy books, books, and more books. For her almost $500 in total purchases, I am grateful. For her two snoopy and absolutely annoying sons, not so much. This lady had never been in the store before last week and at the time of her first visit, she refused to give me her email address. I’m fine with that. But yesterday when she found out from someone else that email customers were getting an extra 10% off on their purchases, she got upset with me because I wouldn’t give it to her. Oh well.

I’ve been holding two books for a customer who special ordered them back in April. At the time, I asked him to prepay the order, as is our policy with books we don’t normally carry in the store. He refused. Since the total order was under $40, I let it go and placed the order. The books arrived and for the past several months I have tried to reach this man – by phone, by email, by regular mail. No response. Yesterday he called the store saying he had been traveling and now he wants his books. But . . . he knows we are closing and feels he should get those special order books at a steep discount. Ha! That’s what you think. I told him absolutely no discounts on special orders. Period. He said he would be in to “talk”. Great. The man is rude and arrogant and I don’t relish the thought of an altercation with him, but I am up for the fight!

In our giftware section, which is actually quite crowded, I have posted MANY signs that say “Do not touch. Please ask for assistance”. I think that’s pretty clear, don’t you? Apparently it isn’t to most of my customers. I cringe every time I hear glass dropping on glass. It’s worse lately.

Again with giftware (which is on sale at 50% off), customers are expecting everything to be in perfect condition, and most of it is. But some of the inventory has been in on our shelves for three years and there are nicks and scratches. So . . . there are those who think that they should get a better discount because of the flaws. Nope. I’m not giving it away.

That’s all for today folks. Can’t wait for Saturday at 4:00 pm. The end.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “The Final Days

  1. KC

    Hey Mom – I feel so blessed to have been a part of the RaphaBooks experience, from literally the first moment of buying inventory. Thanks for letting me be your teacher, and indulging me with the position of boss. I'm sad to see it go – a part of me is going with it! But I know that God has awesome things in store for you and Dad! I can't wait to see what He has in store for you!

  2. Great overview of what you're facing as your time in the store winds down, Wendy. And, yes, you have had quite the experiences, haven't you? Thanks for sharing. It goes without saying I wish you every success in the next phase of your life. I expect it will be even more of a ride than the one you're on now.

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