Sometimes I just wonder….

Most of you know one day a week I give my time volunteering at a local op shop (charity/thrift shop).  And most of you would know goods/things in these shops have been donated to the charities more often than not by people like you and me willing to let others enjoy the pleasure of owning and using the things we don’t need anymore.  What goes on in the shop varies from day to day – it could be as quiet as a morgue or a busy as a day during the Boxing Day sales 🙂

With Christmas acoming donations relevant to this season are now being put out in the shop and the savvy early shoppers are starting to look in the hope of picking up a bargain.  And that’s when the strange behaviour comes to the fore.

Take the case of the ‘used’ ornaments….

Last week we had a huge bowl of loose, single, run of the mill round ball tree type ornaments on display close to the sales desk – all very similar in design and in what we think of as traditional Christmas colours, red green and gold.  I remember them arriving in a plastic bag just after New Year and the person dropping them off saying she’d just taken them off her tree, was tired of them so would get new ones for this Christmas.

One lady picked through the bowl, remarked how lovely it was that others gave away things they didn’t need any more and took out some of the red ones.  There were more of the same in the bowl and because they were so reasonably priced (10c ea.) as she was paying I asked her if she’d like the rest of them.  ‘No’ she said ‘they’ve been used’

Not being sure what she meant by that I mentioned they’d all been donated and yes, they had all been used.  Her reply was, ‘the ones I left in the bowl still have the little hangers on them which means they have definitely been used.  I don’t want anything that is second hand!’

(obviously one of us hadn’t taken the hooks off before they were put out for sale)

Then there were the 4 sets of some older ornaments packed in their original boxes (similar to the ones below)


which were donated by the family of a recently deceased lady who used to pop in quite frequently. She would come in carrying donations and more often than not leave carrying other things she fancied 🙂

Anyway I turned up one day to be told that on the previous day one well known (to us) shopper had been very happy with her find, bought two of the boxes, and had left the shop with a smile on her face. Later that day she came back looking for the other two boxes – which of course had been snapped up soon after she walked out the door.

Well, as one of the other vollies said – you should have heard the carry on! ‘Why were there only 4 boxes, you should have known they would sell quickly!’ ‘Why didn’t you keep the other two for me, you knew I was interested in them’. (Previously she has been known to ask for something to be set aside till later in the day but there was certainly no mention of that on this particular day).  Seems she left muttering about all the money she spent there and ‘this is the way I’m treated’

Yes there are times when I scratch my head and wonder…..

Is it just me or would you begin to wonder as well 🙂

16 Replies to “Sometimes I just wonder….”

  1. I think anyone who has contact with customers will have similar stories. Some people are owed something by life, some are just rude, but most are just plain stupid.


  2. The world is full of strange people. Thrift stores rock. My daughter and her daughter buy all their clothes from a thrift store near them! Recycled items have character, just like people. Out with theme wand in with the old I say!


  3. I was in a Sue Ryder shop once and heard a client complain that the dress she had picked out – new, with tags – did not have the store hanger – so could she have a reduction.


  4. The boxed ornaments? I have some of those. And they trigger memories every years. Memories which would be absent if I only had ‘new’ things.
    You are not alone in sometimes wondering. Rather a lot.


  5. Of course they were all used. Gee…golly. LOL
    I too would have snatched up those older balls. They are just what I am looking for. Then again, I’m known around or op shop for seeing something I want and not getting it.


  6. Sounds like a fun place to volunteer, and maybe a tad frustrating too. I prefer old and comfortable myself.


  7. Clearly they don’t realise how second-hand shops work. I love browsing through op shops, but don’t often buy. Usually I’m looking for something specific.


  8. Have you explained to the lady (actually both of them) what kind of shop you have there? Some people are really strange, but we must allow them to be so, because where would bloggers be if everybody were the same? We’d have no one to write about.

    You have reminded me: I have been thinking of sorting through my own boxes of ornaments with a view to donating them to the charity shop. Perhaps I’d better get on with it.


Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: