Damn the…Nevermind!

Good afternoon from Butler & Bailey Market.

I hope everyone is doing well. We all had a day of yesterday so we are rested and ready to start a new week.

We started our new store hours this morning. We are now opening at 10am and closing at 6 pm. Tuesday and Saturday we will be open from 9am until 10am for our high risk folks. We are still closed on Wednesday and Sunday. This has allowed us to move to one shift a day for our staff which is a big help. We will see how it goes for now  and if need be, continue to adapt to new circumstances as they arise. I do want you to be especially mindful of our new closing  time. We sanitize the store after closing which takes a while so we want to be as prompt as we can on getting the store closed since we are on one shift now.

I talked with Martha Buchanan on Saturday. She is in the store quite often so I have been able to keep in close contact with her since this started. I always discuss with her all the measures we have put in place for safety and ask her for any suggestions for improvement. She assured me we have been taking the appropriate measures to reduce risk for all of us. I will tell you she couldn’t emphasize enough the importance of washing hands and not touching your face!! Washing hands is easy, not touching ones face is much more difficult. Without coming right out and saying it, I am pretty convinced she thinks this is the biggest cause of spread. The easy fix for this would be to cut all of our hands off but I’m not sure how practical that is. That’s why grocery people aren’t in charge of these type of decisions. I will say it helped Singapore’s crime rate.

A few more things about the store. We continue to get asked when the best time to shop is. We are busiest right when we open and late in the afternoon so mid day might be a good time. I also want to remind or let you know that we do have Apple Pay and Google Pay at our registers which gives you a touch free choice for payment. It is pretty easy to set up on your phone. I can tell you this because I did it myself and technology is not my forte. I also want you to know that the antibacterial wipes that we provide to our customers are in short supply. I anticipate running out any day now so if you have wipes, you may want to bring them with you to the store. We make a solution that we use on all the surfaces at the store continuously but I think the wipes give everyone an extra level of comfort. Hopefully, we will find new supplies of these soon!

Finally, I am determined to have a good week at the store this week. I would be the first to tell you that last week was a hard week for me. The anxiety level of my staff was at an all time high and I don’t  think the customers were far behind. On top of that, based on the news, the next couple of weeks were just going to get worse concerning the virus.

Everyone here is my adopted family. I don’t know if I adopted them or they adopted me, but I feel personally responsible  for their well being when they are here. When I see them struggling emotionally  with this mess it becomes a balancing act for me. I have to decide what is best for them and at the same time what is best for our customers and community. Mr. Bailey used to always say “damn the torpedoes, full steam ahead”, when times got tough around here. What I have realized going through this, is sometimes you just can’t damn away all the torpedoes and go full steam ahead….you better keep some powder dry. So forgive me for all of the changes we have had to make and may have to make going forward. I am just looking out for the well-being of my folks and in effect the well-being of myself.

Once again, many thanks for all the positive support you have given us the last few weeks! It makes this all worthwhile. We are going to continue to do our best for you going forward even if we have to take a few steps back to do this. We are not going to “damn the torpedoes” but rest assured, I am damning this virus on a continuous basis!

Thanks for letting us be a part of your community!

Tom Butler

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