Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Happy Christmas!

I have no tales of my adventures in and around Aberdeenshire to report as I've barely left the village for what seems like forever!  Everything looks absolutely beautiful covered in snow, but all roads other than the main bus routes are still covered in lethal ice and I'm not going out unless I really have to.

We are very fortunate to live at the village shop so whatever the weather, we just walk through from the house into the shop - safe, warm and dry. 

The weather has undoubtedly had a negative effect on business at Starfish Studio.  On several days the main coast road (A92) has been treacherous, and the dual carriageway (A90) not much better so people have been staying at home whenever possible. 

The A92

My daughters have had several snow days off school - Eilidh usually travels to Stonehaven on a school bus but, due to the road conditions, they were cancelled for ten days in total.

Even the village Primary School was closed for 8 full days and 2 half days.

Many of the people who visited the shop throughout the year and said they would definitely be back for Christmas shopping just haven't appeared - and I don't blame them!

It's difficult enough for small businesses to survive without the additional problems thrown our way by the weather.  What I desperately hope is that Christmas shoppers haven't just been making one trip out to a giant supermarket and doing all their present buying along with their food shopping.  The amount of money pouring into a very small number of businesses at the expense of many thousands of small, local businesses is really very alarming.  In the last 2 years, Tesco alone have opened an additional 392 stores, but don't get me started on that again...! 

I have to admit that I do love the snow, and although it has been very bad for business, I've got to spend some lovely extra time with my girls - largely involving building Lego masterpieces and baking naughty treats!

Now there are only three sleeps to go until Christmas.  After the big day I'll be open on 30th & 31st December but will then be closing for 2 weeks to allow time to repaint the shop walls and (weather permitting) get out and about a bit myself.

It just remains for me to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year.  Thank you very much for your interest, custom and support throughout 2010.

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