15 December 2011

Cats and (Silly) Cows

I've been doing a lot of talking about the cat in the last week. I swear I'm going to make a sign to hang around her neck:

Yes I am real.
My name is Calypso.
I am a Bengal.
No not a tiger, a domestic cat.
My originating breed was an Asian Leopard Cat.
Yes I was expensive.
Yes it's rude to ask how much.
No you may not pick me up.
Yes you may pat me (for a while).
Yes you may photograph me.
Don't forget to look at the antiques while you're here.

I think that will cover the same questions I've been asked eleventy-hundred times as well as point out that people have actually come into an antiques shop, not a cat show.  Having said that, Calypso is gorgeous and getting more gorgeous every week.  She’s almost four months old and is getting a long gangly leg look that is very cute.  She is a media megastar now, having had her photograph appear in Eumundi Green (the local rag), although I have copped a deal of criticism for her photograph not doing her justice.  But hey, you try photographing a kitten who has decided she's got a rat in her head and is dashing from pillar to post, with a deadline for when the photograph must be submitted.  I don't know how animal photographers do it.

Last week saw some good selling in the shop, and so far this week is shaping up to be better.  Finally we’re starting to sell Christmas presents, so it turns out that there will be the Spirit of Giving after all this year, not a bunch of Scrooges.  Things don’t have to be expensive to be beautiful, and people seem to be really taking care to select something that their loved ones will appreciate rather than dashing in and making quick decisions.  Mind you, we’ll see what happens on Christmas Eve, with the last minute shoppers.

The wait for the new stock is becoming interminable.  The Customs Agent reported on Monday that the ship hadn’t even been fully unloaded yet – and it arrived the previous Wednesday.  But hopefully it will go directly from the ship to the Agent and they have a fumigation chamber on site so fingers crossed it will go straight into fumigation.  That way there is a prospect of picking it up next week.

We do still have a bunch of furniture from previous trips that hasn’t made it into the shop yet, though, so we can still continue to put new things out.  I put a heap of jewellery out yesterday and promptly sold a fair bit of it, and in the window we put a beautiful small Georgian English walnut chest of drawers, which is a little over 200 years old.  Small chests of drawers are always more popular than whacking great pieces, because it doesn’t matter how big or small your house is, a dinky chest of drawers will always fit somewhere.  This one has book-matched veneer, which is always a good sign of quality because it was quite wasteful of the wood to achieve the ‘mirrored’ effect.  It’s a lovely little piece, with the additional benefit of its original locks and key, plus it has a pull-out slope above the top drawer which is a bit more unusual.  So anyway, we’ll see how long it lasts.  The last time I had a small chest of drawers they weren’t as good as this piece but they didn’t last a week before they were hauled off to Sydney in the back of someone’s car.

I must say I am partial to Georgian design, which I find sits nicely with Art Deco because they both have simple, elegant lines.  We’ve got Georgian furniture with 1950s Scandinavian lamps,  Australian 1960s chairs and Art Deco coffee tables in our lounge room at the moment (it changes from time to time) and to my eye it works because we keep the lines simple.

Someone from a nearby shop was complaining over dinner the other night about Customer Fatigue, where they had a whole bunch of rude and extra demanding customers to deal with.  Touch wood, but it’s been a long time since we had someone like that, and I do have my favourite television line in waiting to use on the next horrible one to come in.   But I did just have a stupid woman come in, who said What are you doing open on a Thursday?  I said We’re always open on Thursdays.  And she said No you're not!  I told her that we’ve had the shop for almost three and a half years now and although I might have been living in a parallel universe in that time, in my reality the shop had been open every Thursday for that entire period.  And in homage to Myth Busters I said I reject your reality, and substitute my own.  And she just looked at me blankly.  If one was cruel one might say bovinely.  And I am cruel, so let’s just call a spade a spade and say she was a silly cow.  I hate it when people don’t get my clearly very amusing jokes. 

And then she said Well anyway I’m on holidays and don’t normally come to Eumundi during the week.  So like she’d know when I’m open during the week!  She seemed to be taking the opportunity to have a little brain holiday too, I think.  But stupid isn’t horrible, just tedious, so my favourite television line remains in reserve for future use.

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