Saturday was a relatively pointless day at the Major Home Improvement Retailer. Well, it was non-pointless in the sense that I got paid, but I didn’t accomplish much of anything. Except for trees and Christmas-related items such as lights, the MHIR is not the sort of retailer that gets much of a pre-Christmas rush. In fact, the busiest season is the spring, quite unlike most other retailers.
What all this meant is that there weren’t many customers on Saturday, as it was too close to Christmas for many people to be shopping for trees and decorations (and in any event there was very little stock remaining). Only two or three employees could have taken care of the garden department just fine. Trouble is, for most of my 8-hour shift there were anywhere from five to seven people on duty. Without many customers, and with no freight to pack out, I spent much of my shift just wandering the aisles trying to look busy. I wouldn’t have minded too much, but that makes for a very slow-moving day.
Another similarly bored employee and I spent some time moving shelving in the outside garden area (an activity known as “setting steel”) even though a traveling construction crew is responsible for that task. It’s tough and noisy work, involving moving heavy shelf beams into place and banging them with rubber mallets until they fit tightly, but noisy as it was it at least made the time pass at something more than a glacial pace.
Sunday was a much easier day as I worked only a 4-hour shift. That’s fairly unusual for me. The store was a bit busier than it had been on Saturday, and garden wasn’t nearly as overstaffed, but that didn’t matter too much as I spent most of my shift consolidating the remaining Christmas trees into one corral and then disassembling three now-empty corrals. It was pretty decent work, and unlike the day before my shift went by in no time flat.