I've dithered for two solid days about posting this. If my wise, conservative brain were working harder, I probably would refrain. But my wild, impulsive brain, along with it's injured party self, appear to still be in charge.
Saturday morning, I had THE WORST experience ever in a yarn shop.
Worse than the time the owner of a yarn shop else-where glared disapprovingly at my then 4 and 6 year old daughters, just knowing that their hands had to be dirty and sticky (they were clean), and just knowing that despite their actual behavior (very gently touching balls of yarn that were attractive to them, but not pulling any out of their bins until they found the ONE that they wanted me to knit something for them with), they were going to haul all the yarn out onto the floor, covering each skein with the equivalent of honey covered dirt and lint and stuff. Needless to say, I did not wind up buying yarn to knit either of them a project that day.
Worse than the time I was ignored completely by all the staff, possibly because I was in an upscale neighborhood wearing jeans and a t-shirt, and was thus prevented from spending a couple hundred dollars on yarns I wanted.
Worse than..... well...here's what happened:
My friend and I went into a yarn store where two things were happening: 1) there was a sale on some of their yarns and 2) they were offering a limited supply of highly sought-after, otherwise-unavailable-in-town yarn (so limited that they had a nice sign saying "one to a customer"). When we arrived there were two other customers in the store; one who was about to make a purchase, and one who was looking at the limited supply yarn.
We looked at the yummy yarn, and only after the other customer had walked away, did we each pick up a couple of skeins, contemplating the colors. She said hello, pleasantly enough, and pointed out that we could each only have one. We acknowledged the limitations, and told her we were deciding about colors. At the time, we were the only people looking at that yarn.
We carried our possible choices around, dithering, holding them up to the light, lamenting that we had to choose. At one point one of us made a comment about not "needing" more yarn, but acknowledging how hard it is to resist the good stuff. She said that if we didn't need it, we should put it back; someone else would happily buy it. (?) We laughed it off, pointing out that "need" rarely had anything to do with whether or not we actually bought yarn.
I looked about at the other sale yarns, and then went on a quest for a yarn that would meet Kitty's requirements for the item she's asked me to knit for her (fingerless gauntlets that will be lacy and pretty but will NOT make her hands hot). I found a linen blend (NOT on sale) that I thought might do, but, at first blush, it appeared that there was only one skein of the only color that I thought might work. I dug around some more, in other baskets and displays, looking for something else that would do, and found that lo! there were two skeins of the potentially magic yarn. I took them to my friend to see what she thought.
I then borrowed her phone (having run away from home without mine) to call home to see if this new to the discussion color would suit. Kitty said that it would be marvelous.
Meanwhile, my friend was also roving the shop, fondling other yarns -- some sale, but most not, and trying to figure out if she could substitute one yarn they had for one that a sweater pattern she wants to knit asks for. (Yep, she's trying to buy not only one skein of the "special" yarn, but a whole sweater's worth of something else.)
During this time, one or two other customers may have come in, but we were never in their way. We did talk with one of her employees, who was otherwise engaged in knitting swatches from the balls of yarn that were out for "yarn tasting" - and who asked us our opinion on a book that the owner was considering carrying. As far as I could tell, we were working our way in to more purchases than we'd planned for... and were not in anyone's way... and were not, in fact, monopolizing the staff's time.
Which is why I was dumbfounded when the Owner came up to us and told us that it was time for us to leave! She said that "days like this" are not good days to just come spend three hours in the yarn store.
Had I not just found yarn for Kitty's project, after literally months of scouting and intermittent internet searches for just the right thing, I would have walked out the door then and there. My friend felt the same way.
I did make my purchase.... (and since I'd decided to spend any money at all, went ahead and got a skein of the "special" yarn as well -- though I may wind up selling it to my friend), but as of now, I intend to avoid darkening her door ever again. My friend felt the same way -- in fact she was more hurt and offended than I was.
When we got to our car, we found that --- including the literally 10 minutes it took her to ring up two purchases (totaling five balls of yarn between the two of us), we'd spent less than an hour in the store. We also noticed that despite the fact that she'd marked off as having been used a discount card that my friend had, she had not, in fact, given her the discount.
All I can say is WTF????