Six days in Paeroa – Small Town New Zealand

The Shoe Man called, mentioning he had opened his head up while mowing under the deck and was in Waikato Hospital (North Island, New Zealand).  As he had just been through major surgery and a blood transfusion, my first bright helpful response was “what needs to be done?”

All organisation and advertising conquered, all 3 of us rock up to set up temporary shop at 110 Normanby Road in Paeroa, land of the iconic L & P drink.

A few things happened this week that I didn’t expect.

Each morning as I drove into town from Hikutaia I saw the same elderly couple taking their morning walk. Children on holiday at the park or hanging about in random flocks. Noisy magpies in the trees and the chilly surprise discovering it colder in the shop than out.  There is something very safe about the small and the predictable.

I never anticipated we would see a teenage couple dressed in wetsuits and life jackets carrying a rubber boat up the street to get money from the ATM.  They stopped to talk to me and the people that were renovating the 4 Square stopped to join us.  The electrician from Adams Electrical even leant on a car to pose for me! Hilarious good fun!  Apparently the young ones had paddled the boat two and half hours down stream!!  Good Work.  🙂

In total we sold nearly 300 pairs of shoes, 74 on the first day.  We spoke with social workers.  They told us “good” work stories.  Both Pam (my shoe selling mate) and I felt really honoured to hear these stories.  Ladies with partners in rest homes, ladies that were encouraging these same ladies. Women who had suffered falls with special requirements in a shoe.  Friends who purchased more than 2 pairs and customers who became friends when they came back more than once and often twice in one day!

We saw painted toes, smelly feet, and variations of bunions, arthritis, double hip replacements and stroke survivors, dancers, young brides to be, flat feet, long feet and very small feet.  We had 3 very fascinating ladies I discovered at Court Yard Cafe (me getting tea).  One a glass sculptor from Kaimai (not all that far from where I live) in the Bay of Plenty.  They surveyed the entire building and skipped around the store arm in arm. Gorgeous!

While I was at work for 6 days, my father (Pops) teaches Levi how to ride his 2 wheel bike without trainer wheels.  The speed with which he roars down the hill, from under the plum tree and across the drive and down the garden!  So proud.  Jesse decides to do the same but running.  Got the speed wobbles and I thought his forehead was going to greet the pavers…Yay that didn’t happen!

After not seeing their Dad for a week, we come home to a very tidy house, orders to take the trainer wheels off the “other bike” and a feed from our local fish n chip shop. YUUUUM!  Builder Boy has been so bored without us he has even tidied the toy cupboard…oh my, I am impressed  😉

This week I would like to make a special Thank You to

–   Chrissy at Cee Moore Beauty, Hill Street Paeroa.  She did a great job on my toes in preparation for shoe selling week.  I think we may have seen a few of your customers 🙂

–   Pam for working with me and being so awesome.

–   The Shoe Man (David) for hiring us.  It’s ok to think that we girls are a little mad (we are). Please heal well and maybe wear a helmet?

–    My parents for looking after our 3 Fun Ones all week.  I hope the payment of filling your fridge with beer was enough? You both did really well considering you were hung-over from jetlag and Dad, your back went bad crazy on you.

–  The ladies at the Cosy Kitchen who delivered our pots of tea on a tray with cake.  Lifesaver as it was soooo cold…brrrr…

Kelly

littlefish@spratts.co.nz | +64 21 0236 5998 | Papamoa Beach New Zealand

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