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Stories from a small shop - Books and Covers

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Stories from a small shop - Books and Covers

My favourite thing about running a small shop is the people who come through the door.  On any given day, you just never know who will turn up and what stories they will impart.  If ever the old adage "don't judge a book by its cover" needed to be proven, you need look no further for evidence than the customers of a small shop.

The perfect illustration of my point: one murky grey afternoon recently, a lady came into the shop – I’m going to call her Barbara, for no other reason than on first impressions she looked like a Barbara; neat mousy hair, anorak and shopping bag, probably in her late 50s/early 60s, who had the quiet, unassuming air of one who, though not down-trodden, had possibly spent her life as dutiful wife, had a steady job, a family-focus and a nice home in the small town where she grew up. Books and covers. 

Inspired by some wooden carvings of giraffes, by the time she left 25 minutes later, I had had the full story of her adventures in Africa, canoeing down crocodile-infested rivers through herds of hippopotami, dodging bull-elephants who had decided to take a stroll right through their encampment and drinking sundowners by a watering-hole not 10 metres away from jaguars coming down to drink their own. 

You just never know.

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  • Mo MacLeod
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