Jun 2, 2013

Co-op daying . . .

I've always loved the word "co-op", just loved the way it sounded. 
So important, so interesting, with the promise of so many wonderful things all grouped together.
The doing of new things, with dozens of shelves overflowing with bottles and bags of this and that.
Spices and teas and healthy things. It makes me happy.

You don't have to get up too early when you go to work at the co-op. You have leave by eight or eight-thirty. And I didn't actually have to work. Mom and sisters did the work. I came along for the ride cause I needed to go shopping after close-up time.

Started out making lists, but got caught up in a story idea instead. Happens all the time.

Cloudy and rainy over the state line.

Sweet farm and ranch land. I love red barns and white houses on prairie.

The first thing you do when you get to the co-op, after you come through the storage area into the store, is turn on the lights, and all these beautiful shelves, stacked and arranged in lines and rows and variety, come to light. Flours and grains, and bread mixes. Mason jars of honey, bottles of liquid, colors and sizes!

An old lady, she brought in a blue, five gallon bucket of cucumbers almost right away. Huge delicious cucumbers. I think she had glasses, and short white hair.

I told myself I'd take pictures of people that day. Listen to them talk, converse with my sisters. I love people watching. But the minute the bells rang over the door I rushed back to the storage area and hid in the little office with a tinted window and stare at them from safety. Hence no pictures of customers.

But there was a very nice young Native man who came in.
And a sweet girl with blue hair who came in with her grandpa who bought her chocolate.
And a tall blond boy with long hair who wanted Cream of Tora Tora, but we were all out.
A nice, sweet lady whom everyone knew but me. I'm sure she wondered about the strange girl lurking about.

Dawna worked at the bagging counter, all day. She'd scoop up the produce, or whatever, into bags, then twist ties around them. I love this one cause of the blue and golden-orange yellow apricots. It was my first real day with my beautiful new lens, Kat. I love her.

Hannah, making lists of things, and stocking shelves. I love her ability and the zeal she has for organization and lists, and all that.

Fresh tomatoes! Should have grabbed them while I had the chance.

I could not get over how, if you're working there, you could grab food off the shelves and start eating it. Granted, you had to pay for it later, but the discount makes it hardly anything for us, which is so wonderful! It did not make me stare for long, though. I got right into the spirit of the thing and munched along with them.

Discussing the ingredients of some coconut oil. I'm so amazed by Mama and my sisters. They are an unending fountain of knowledge when it comes to foods! They know everything!

All day I went about the store, looking for things, and I loved the dripping little faucet, the way it curves over the sink.

The papers on the shelves which meant nothing to me, but did a fine job of looking important and intelligent. These are the shelves in the office, with the high, high ceiling, where I hid myself away.

There are so many nooks and crannies around old buildings. Little places like this where the light falls and corners and brooms and sticks make shadows.

Miss Bucket, peeking out from the curtains, and how the curtains are just this whole faded length of homespun goodness!

The handwritten signs everywhere. They always say, look at me, I'm important and useful because someone knows what I mean, and whatever it is I mean, they do it.

There was so much time to talk, and listen to my sisters talk. They said it was a very slow day. And I loved talking to them while they worked.

Our little stash of things to buy. Note: those marshmallows are delicious.

Me. And the little window I looked out of from the office is just below the mirror.

Just some more the loveliness of the health food store.

I went to the big, store front windows, to watch the little hometown life drive by. It was much warmer up there, too.

Cash registers. Terribly wonderful how they worked, if only I could figure it out how. Hannah clacked away at it all day long, and receipt printer clicked away. I like how the receipts just roll up out of nowhere and you can tear them off and give to people.

Red beans, white beans, black beans. And some kind of orange rice? next to the lentils.

Dawna would fill up the bags here with the scoop.

Set all the filled bags aside, and then twist the ties around.

Next, Mom would weigh them here, write down the weight, and the cost on labels and stick them on the bags for Hannah or her to stock.

Near the end of the day, I got to help price down a lot of out-of-date items, including lots of cereal, and find a way to stack them on the little 50% off shelves. I got to use the little price sticker thingummy, too. Where you set the price, click the handle, and pop the new price on the item. Oh, and I got to go pick up lunch from  McDonald's for Dawna and I. That was a fun little errand all by myself. They didn't put ketchup in the to-go bag, though.

And when you close up this little bit of the world, you vacuum, and Hannah turns the sign, and locks the front door.You gather up everything into bags, and leave the cash register open, penniless though, and the last thing you do is turn out the lights.

It was a glorious, mysterious day, filled with people and things never done or heard or seen before. I got to see my family work as a team, how industrious they were, I loved them better than ever! There was some talk of my returning another day, and working for an hour. Perhaps.

No comments: