I headed to a local Agway store that's closing, as after 40-some odd years, the owner's retiring. I have two other places that are closer to me where I usually go when I need something in the hardware or gardening line, and they can usually provide me with what I need. For the times they can't, I've gone to the Agway.
When I first went there several years ago, they had two black kittens. Rescues from someplace, and they posted a sign asking customers to be careful not to let the kittens out. The kittens were cute, black, and fuzzy.
They're quite handsome lads now, fully grown, long black fur. Zack and Jack. They clearly own the store and like being pet. There's also a yellow lab who's often in attendance, whose name I don't know, and who is also welcoming.
I've gone there two other
times since the retirement sale started and found a couple things
that I can use now or will use next spring and summer in the garden. At
my last visit, a teenaged boy was my cashier, and I quipped, "You look a
little young to retire."
He smiled and said, "I work
four jobs, so when this one's done, I'll pick up hours at one of the
others." Then he paused and said in a wistful tone, "I'll miss this
A pregnant pause ensued. The owner was saying hello to everyone who walked in, and knew nearly everyone's names. Other employees were helping customers by opening the door, helping to carry heavy items to their cars, or checking in back for an extra whatsit as only one was on the shelf, and the customer needed two.
I looked at the cashier, and his eyes nearly watered. Mine nearly did, too.