I woke at 6.50am to the sound of Ollie trying to get our attention by sneezing and rhythmically banging the back of his head against his cot. After taking him into the living room and placing the Old Macdonald musical Tractor in front of him, I looked out of the window.
If I had tweeted the moment, it would simply have declared 'RAIN!!!' (this will be the only use of exclamation marks in this blogpost, so enjoy them).
Rain isn't usually the ideal weather for shopping and I suspected that today might not turn out to be as rewarding as the huge lovely monster of a day that yesterday was.
I was so so wrong.
From the moment we opened the doors this morning there has been wave after wave of generosity and goodwill. A tsunami of love if you will.
Our first customer was Pamela, a lovely lady who picked up 3 out of print horror novels we'd found for her. She couldn't afford all of them but she paid for two and promised to come back and settle up when she had the money. She always does.
The trickle of customers started and pretty soon the shop was bustling with familiar faces and people that we'd never seen before. It was pretty obvious that most of these people had heard about our struggle and wanted to come and help.
Throughout the day it emerged that many of our customers and supporters were very good at spreading the word about the bookshop and conversations starting..."we heard about you ..." ended in various ways, including
- from my next door neighbour
- from Harringay Online
- in the pub last night
- on the bus
- on Twitter
- afer my friend posted about you on their blog
- from Facebook
- at our residents association meeting
- in Boots. A woman was telling everyone to come and buy books
These were all people who hadn't been here before and now felt that it was important enough to get in touch and help.
Our wonderful regular customers were also out in force today and I was moved to tears on more than one occassion by the generosity some people showed. From one young customer looking up at me and telling me ernestly 'I don't buy my books anywhere else', to the jaw droppingly kind offers made by some people that frankly still have my bottom lip quivering just writing this.
But Simon, what about the Strugglometer? I hear you cry.
Well, here you are.
Tomorrow is our first committee meeting at the shop, so if you want to come along, we're meeting at 11.00am. I don't know if we have enough mugs to make coffee for everyone who's said they'll be there, so you might want to bring a thermos flask.
This is followed by board games tomorrow afternoon, so a full day awaits.
I'll post again soon.