About 2 yrs ago I went into Apples to Zinnias with my friend, Wendy and the LGs. The LGs were still in a stroller. When we walked the man working there looked like he was going to blow a gasket. He followed us around and made us feel really unwelcome. I called the next day and talked to the owner. The owner was as nice as could be and apologize profusely. A week later I went in and bought the wallet I had been trying to look at when I was in there the first time.
Today I had A LOT of time to kill in Orlando so I met Wendy at Borders. After that we went to lunch, then I asked her if she wanted to go to A to Z with us. She said sure.
As we walked into the store I saw the employee behind the counter bristle as if he had just seen something that really makes him angry. I told the girls they could touch things with 2 fingers but could not pick them up. As we rounded a corner Avery came face to face with her first Christmas tree of the season. She was touch, touch, touching it. I repeated my touch but dont pick-up rule a few times. I noticed that the employee (who was still behind the counter talking to another patron) was visibly upset everytime one of the girls touched or even looked at something. He would lurch forward and make an audible noise, like he wanted to yell "STOP!!!!"
I saw that Avery was bending my rule a bit. She was taking two ornaments and "tinking" them together. Not pulling them off the tree but making them touch so that they made a pretty noise. I told her a few times to stop. She wasn't listening. In my head I thought, 'I could make her stop. then she would move on to something more expensive or I could take my chances with the $12 ornaments. ok, I would rather pay for those then something $100 that I dont want.' So I kept walking and the clerk was getting more and more upset. I was about 3 feet away from Avery with Emerson in between the two of us and the clerk yelled, "Hey, They are not listening to you!" I of course was already on edge due to the way he was acting so I turned around and realized he was the same guy from 2 yrs ago. Here is a paraphrased version of the conversation(yelling match) that happened next. I am not proud of my self for loosing my temper. I am trying to be a better role model for the girls...I do believe though that I did a lot less yelling then he did.
"Your the guy who was nasty to me the last time I was in here!"
"Probably, if you had them with you."
"Let me talk to your manager."
"Im the owner."
"I dont think so."
"I'll bet you $50, 000 I am!"
"whatever, If they break something I will pay for it."
"YES, YOU WILL PAY FOR SOMETHING IF THEY BREAK IT!"
as if the fates were listening my gentle little Emerson who was standing right in front of me picked up the ugliest ceramic reindeer ever and dropped it.
"OK, YOUR GONNA BUY THAT!"
"IT'S NOT BROKEN!!!" and it wasn't
"Emerson Avery, come on we are leaving."
"Good. (something I dont remember, but it wasn't nice)"
Avery looked at me and I said, "Come on we are not welcome here." and she started to cry (like a fit cause she did not want to leave) "No, Avery we are leaving...Wait actually cry, cry like you you've never cried before." She just looked at me like, 'what? you've never asked me to cry before...'
Im thinking I need to plan a playdate with all my Mothers of Multiples friends.
When we left I had to go sit to calm myself down and Wendy then told me he was talking about me and the girls to the other customer. Avery said, "Him not nice, Mama." I agree Avery, him not nice.
For those of you who own a business...here's a little customer service advice: If you are worried about a child breaking something all you have to do is engage the child. Talk to them about the things they are looking at. Show them other "shiny" stuff. It does two very important things. 1. It lets you keep tally of what the kid has it's grubby little hands on. 2. It gives the parent time to SHOP!!! SPEND MONEY!!!
I was in retail for over 10 yrs... I should know...