Saturday, 17 December 2011

New trading venue - part 2

Week 2 at new pitch was yet another new experience for me - JD was away on a much deserved hollier in the sun so it looked like that I would be on my own for setting up and packing up this week. Luckily, my good friend T offered to help out which was a godsend! I felt kinda bad cos the weather was FREEZING - she popped over to mine early and then I drove us to the venue (we even had the challenge of clearing ice on the windscreen sans scraper, aaagh!). After all of that, she insisted on hanging around to keep me company for a despite the fact that her feet were like ice blocks! A friend of hers who lived nearby then popped down to check out the stall so I urged the 2 of them to head into the warmth so off they went to grab a coffee. Even though last week wasn't so cold, I had learnt my lesson and this week, had armed myself with 4 layers of clothing, 2 layers of legwear and extra thick socks, as well as cracking out what I call my "McNulty" hat (see The Wire, Season 2, episode 1 for an example!!!) Despite all this, it wasn't enough to keep my toes warm but I've come to the conclusion that nothing really does if you are standing around and not moving much......

So this week, I decided against pitching in front of the large Christmas tree and asked the stall next to me if there was any possibility of being next to them somewhere. When I was given no straight answer on this, I then had to go to plan B and decided to go to the other side of the Christmas tree instead. My fear had been that if I was not within eyesight of the other stall trading in this area, no-one would notice that I would be around as well. In reality, this week actually turned out better for smelly water overflow from the other stall and not much of a battle with the winds either since one of  my sides was protected by the wall of a building. Again like last week, trading felt slow but each purchase was "sizeable" which was quite encouraging :)

T and her friend came back later and both bought some cakes to try which was lovely - I did try to offer a discount but was told off and scolded that this was not the way to do business. They had a point but at the same time, that's what you do for friends, right? There were a couple of highlights today and they were right at the end of the trading day. Firstly, a guy walks past and says that he likes what he sees and goes off to the hole in the wall to get some cash. T is begging me to wait for him but since it was a long day, I began to pack up anyway and figured that he wasn't going to come back. He proves me wrong and does come back and proceeds to buy a whole cheesecake, some Oreos and even wanted a small Christmas cake??!! I had to tell him that the Chrimbo cakes had to be ordered a week in advance and the ones that I had were actually just for display. He had wanted to buy the cake because he thought it would be a nice present for his babysitter so seeing as it was so close to Christmas, I relented and let him have the small display cake. After a bit more chat (and a quick taste of my sample cake), he said that he would be back closer to Christmas to buy the large display cake if no-one wanted it which was pretty cool! My final cool story of the day was about a couple who raced back to the stall right at the very end of the day. I was literally about to close the boot to the car and head home only to have them enquire about whether I had any more large chocolate salt caramel pecan tarts left; they had bought a small one earlier and had loved it so much that they decided to come back and buy a larger one!! So, all in all, not a bad day with a few big sales at the end and for that, I think I have to thank T for being my luck charm for the day, thanks again for all your help! :)   
Dry and sunny but bloody Baltic!!

Chef - vous avez raison, comme d'hab.....c'est meilleur avec nappage! :)

No comments: