I survived another garage sale!
For three days this last week on a Wednesday, a Thursday and a Friday we held our sale. Our street is a fairly busy thoroughfare during the week as people use it on their way to and from work and to and from the schools nearby. Garage sales held on the weekends usually turn out bad for us. We also had the most beautiful weather ever. Almost too pretty for a sale. I know that my husband would’ve rather been in his boat. I know that, because that’s where he’s been since we finished the sale!
We didn’t advertise in the newspaper as we used to. We found that by doing that,you have people knocking on your door at six in the morning looking for furniture and other things for their antique booths. Plus it costs a fortune. So this year we went with signs and Craig’s List. Someone did steal two of our signs that we left up overnight the first evening, but lesson learned. Bring them in when you close down and it’s all good. We sold a ton of clothes that our daughter had outgrown, toys, a few computers and a bunch of racks and file cabinets from the video store. People were really purchasing things they needed and could really use. Economy? I think so.
The most entertaining thing about a holding a garage sale are the people. There was the van filled with the developmentally disabled. I don’t know how many they had in there, but they just kept filing out. They loved our bubble machine that we had cranking in order to draw attention. And it’s a big plus for the childen. It kept them busy while mom or dad looked around. There was the lady searching for toys to send overseas. Her son was in a high profile murder case in our town several years ago and was acquitted. I didn’t want to elaborate on that and I was blown away when she started talking about it. When I ignored her she started talking to my husband. She mentioned that she hoped he was not in law enforcement. He didn’t respond, because, well, he is. There was my friend Mary, who just finished her book. There was the guy walking down the sidewalk with a tie dyed cooler. He had one eye that was partially open. He talked so much and for so long, other people started to leave when I couldn’t get away to help them! We sold an old, cruiser Otasco bike to a hipster that works at a coffe house downtown and we sold our son’s bike to an ecstatic little boy who’d been bike shopping. It was his last day of school and the bike was a reward for doing so well. Thanks to the yoginis that showed up, you guys scored some great stuff for your kids!
Then there was that little girl the very first day. She was adorable and was wearing the cutest hat. She’d picked out a few toys and some books. She came up to pay with her mom and I noticed her left eye had a sore above the brow line and her eye was slightly bruised. I asked her how she hurt her eye. Her mom replied, “We were hit by a drunk driver in Arkansas and she has a plate in her face. We’re on our way to the hospital to have that removed so we’re loading up on stuff to do.” Whoa. I asked her mom how old she was and she said she’s 6 now. She was 4 when the accident happened. I asked her if everything else was ok. Her mom said, “No, not really. She’s actually missing the entire left side of her brain.” I felt something totally drop inside of me. No way. There was no indication of this. Her motor skills were not funky, she was quick to talk and think. I was blown away. I wanted to know more, but the sale was busy and it felt weird to pry.
Garage sales are a lot of work. I don’t like having them, but I love how I feel when they’re over. I spent the entire sale wondering about that little girl and her outcome at the hospital. What sort of challenges will she have to face? How unfair. All because someone was drinking and driving, and all because they were at the wrong place at the wrong time. I quit thinking bad thoughts about all the accumulation in our garage that we didn’t have time to purge. I also quit thinking about all the time I felt was wasted on the sale when I would’ve rather been doing something else. Both of our kids are healthy. So am I and so is my husband. Who would’ve thought that the connection made at a garage sale could be such a remimder of what’s really important.