Last Friday was the last day of work at my job and “second home” for the last four months. If you haven’t heard the story of how I got that job…

The day after New Year’s Eve I finally got serious about job hunting and moved to the physical walk-in, hand-out-resume. My Army Strong brother Caleb came along for the ride, but stayed in the car as I walked into restaurants, stores, etc, shook hands, handed out my resumes, and felt my spirits and sense of self-worth instantly plummet to my feet.

Mom had insisted that I stop by this place that was the only store to sell the one kind of tea that she would drink. It was called the British Pantry. This time Caleb came in with me. The store was quaint and small so I found the tea quickly. As the cashier (a petite lady with a British accent) rang me up, I ask her if they would be hiring anytime soon.

Pantry and Lilacs 053“Just a moment, love,” she replied, and disappeared into the back. A moment later the manager emerged, a moment later I was discussing my availability with said manager, and several minutes after I was leaving the British Pantry with tea in one hand and my brother by my side, set to start training 10 am the next morning! Quite a short yet successful job search, I must say. Smile

Four months later, I hugged every server, cook, and cashier that I had worked with and clocked out for the last time. They all treated me so kindly, I am sorry to go.  But Wyoming awaits! Smile 

 

Pantry and Lilacs 052I thought I would introduce you to my workplace of 4 months. It was a rather unique store – opened almost 35 years ago by a couple from England. Now their children and grandchildren run the place, and they have expanded into a restaurant (that makes GREAT fish & chips!), a slightly larger store, and a pub. All right next to each other along the street.

I worked in the middle section – in the store, where we sold china, sweet and savory Pantry and Lilacs 008pastries, imported British foods, and other odds and ends. I don’t claim to be an expert now, but because I had been so ignorant on all things British, I learned a lot about those people that live ‘cross the pond! Smile Like what black pudding is (NOT pudding!), that mushy peas is somehow considered breakfast food, that if you ever want to remind a British of their childhood, show them a Blackpool Rock.

(Story: An English guy from eastern Washington came into our store for the first time and was exclaiming at everything in delight. As he was browsing in the back of the store, I mentioned to my friend and co-worker Laura that whenever any native Englander noticed the Blackpool Rock sitting behind the register, they always exclaimed about it and reminisced how much it reminds them of their childhood. When the man came to register and I was ringing him up, he noticed the Blackpool Rock. His whole face lit up as he loudly exclaimed, “Blackpool Rock!” I started laughing and turned to Laura, saying “Told ya so!” End of story. Smile)

Pickles

 

 

These are pickles. Yet one of the many things I never got around to trying… for perhaps obvious reasons.

 

 

 

 

 

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That’s right, ladies and gents – Canned. Vegetarian. Haggis. At $7 a can no less.

 

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We sold many a banger.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Crisps! Smile I only tried a bite of the Wuster Sauce. ‘Twasn’t bad.

 

 

 

 

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My co-worker Rebecca wanted you to note the cute dragon on this box of porridge. It is pretty cute. Smile

 

 

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The British dearly love their beans!

 

 

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      Peas!

 

 

 

 

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Now I don’t want you to think that I did not try anything in the shop, and thought that everything was nasty, because this would not be true. I found many food items I enjoyed – just many of them were candy bars!

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     <—Delicious

 

 

 

 

 

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Delicious —>

 

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  <— Definitely delicious. Just very crumbly – do not eat on your bed. Speaking from experience, he he.

 

 

And then, of course, there are the baked goods. Made fresh, everyday, on location. Every bit delicious. Just not food you want to eat that often! Smile

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If that doesn’t make your mouth water, I don’t know what will. Winking smile

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We still have memorabilia from the wedding. Open-mouthed smile Cute, no?

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Some of my co-workers

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A photo they took of me hard at work. Winking smile

 

The job was not perfect, of course, but I choose to remember the great times, the kind co-workers, the wonderful and unique customers that made up a one-of-a-kind experience I can tell others about for years to come. Smile Like Mount Rainier, The British Pantry now holds a place of fondness in my heart.

Next to come: Signal Mountain! Hmmmm maybe I should start packing…

Cheers!

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