Trying something new !
As I promised myself, my husband and I hit Reading to shop on Saturday in a celebratory mood as it is May Day weekend. In the fish shop with gentle banter we went away with all we required and feeling valued.Less so in the cheese shop where yet again they didn’t have much in the way of goat’s cheese, this is disappointing as this story has continued for several weeks … ‘we will have some in next week’ so they say. I am sad as there is always plenty of cow’s milk cheese for those who can tolerate it. I did buy goats cheese, but not all that I hoped I am not sure I will return which is a shame as we should be using the independent shops all we can.
I was not disappointed in the record shop after some chat with the owner we found the very one I wanted; a long player by Patti Smith, I had seen a couple of weeks back when it was out of my price range.
Having a good customer experience is not all about buying and selling it is more about good interpersonal skills.
The next part of my journey at the Art centre was just that. The art centre is run buy a couple of paid people but the rest are volunteers and the services are mostly free but as customers we still expect a good experience. Arriving a little early for the Vinyl Club we were welcomed warmly and felt at ease while some artists were making a giant for some other event. Others were moving tables, opening the bar or preparing snacks, there was a happy buzz of expectation and we were not disappointed. The music was a lovely selection brought in by ourselves a bunch of strangers with a common interest and it worked!
We went away not with an empty purse and full shopper but a happy heart!
So in good mood we walked to a pub a little out of the town centre, a beautiful building in a nice part of town. Not unlike the area where we had just visited the art centre. We had discovered that the pub recently taken over by new owners was now serving a selection of good ales and a cheese platter. While I am allergic to lactose I can tolerate a little goat’s cheese and I am am not adverse to beer. But since my husband enjoys all of the above it was an opportunity to do something new!
Sadly, we did not have the welcome we hoped for, the bar person was not even behind the bar; and did take several minutes to appear. Had she given us a reason for her tardiness with a smile we might have forgiven her and then we discovered that the cheese platter didn’t include goat’s cheese we did feel a bit hard done by. She did allow me to have the cheese I happened to have bought earlier.
We soon were the only people in the bar and we noticed that there were some pieces of art hung rather oddly and some books displayed and rather dreary background music. We imagined how such a beautiful building, with the management we had previously experienced could be a super art centre or exhibition space or music venue offering delicious simple food and good beer, what a wonderful combination or a silly dream. And then as the second beer warmed our hearts we wondered about a juke box … oh dear all this vinyl has made me daft. Oh yes and piano ?