This week has been a doozy. (Well, they’re all sort of going to be doozies for the next few months or so, but what are you gonna do.)
It all started last Friday, when we discovered that our former landlord was holding our mail hostage. It sounds absurd, and I wish it were a joke; but it’s not. See, we used to share a PO box with them, and…actually, you know what? It’s not even worth going into. Suffice it to say that there’s a bunch of illegal-ass shit going on and we’re currently working on the best way to sort it out and get our goddamn mail back without paying an arbitrarily decided-upon blood price for it. So that’s Fun Thing #1.
Fun Thing #2: as you may have noticed, there’s been all this horrible weather that has been making this winter an inconvenient slog at best, and dangerous at worst, for us and our employees; not to mention the shipping delays. Oh, and there’s some really big chocolate-related holiday today, what’s it called, St. Bagelbaum’s Day or something, that’s kind of the second biggest holiday of the year for us, and what with all the snowing and slushing and mushing, the past few weeks have been pretty miserable sales-wise at the store. So thanks for that too, Polar Vortex.
Fun Thing #3 would be the beginning stages of the buildout, which – after about a week of trying to get it started, thinking we had everything ready to go – is already about sixty times more complicated than I could have imagined. With the way our loan is structured, all the amounts allocated for equipment, construction, etc. are set in stone ahead of time and budgeted according to quotes we got from contractors and equipment vendors months ago. Of course, now a bunch of other new expenses are popping up (see: ANY CONSTRUCTION PROJECT EVER), and we have to find a way to pay for it all. We also just found out that a piece of equipment I’d been particularly psyched about, a mechanical cutter, won’t actually work with the product we were hoping it would work for. Super-awesome yaytimes.
In the face of all this, my natural instinct is to crawl into a dark hole and hide until it’s all over. Alas – that ain’t an option, so I just have to run through what will probably happen and do my best with that:
Fun Thing #1 will be dealt with at some point, hopefully ending in a maniacal-laugh-and-hand-rubbing combo on my part.*
Fun Thing #2 is completely out of our control, and we all just have to suck it up and deal with the awful weather.
And absolutely nothing about Fun Thing #3 is out of the ordinary, as everyone else who’s built out a space can attest. Last week, our friend Joel from People’s Pops, who are generously sharing their space with us while we build ours, gave me a margarita pop and basically told me that our lives were going to suck immeasurably for the next few months, but that afterwards it would be worth it.
*Spoiler Alert: it will almost certainly be less satisfying and climactic than that. But a girl can dream.
It’s hard to keep in perspective that all the shitty stuff is transitory, and keeps us moving towards a better and better place. Time has a way of blurring past suffering and hardship, and making one think (falsely), “well, it was bad then, but it was nothing like this…”
That way of thinking has no place in a small business. You have the thought, but then you have to let it go. Complain about the snow, and then get your ass out there and go to work. Cry about the mistake you made, and then figure out how to fix it. It sounds a little harsh, but otherwise you get sucked into the Swamps of Sadness** and never escape.
Things are daunting right now, but moving in the right direction. I know in the end that it will, a thousand percent, be worth it. I just hope next week is a little bit less “fun.”
Oh, right – and Happy Valentine’s Day to you all! (I was joking earlier, I totally knew that it was Valentine’s Day.) Go eat some candy or something.