The owner of the shop below started the business when she was 40 years old. Back then, penny sweet shops would have been fairly common, but as out of place as it seems today, a lot of little kids still enjoy going in. This big kid liked dropping by too. Whether I went in alone, or with clients on photowalks, the warm welcome and ready smile were always the same. The only thing that really changed was the old lady’s age. It tended to vary. Sometimes she was 91 or 92, and on other days it was 93 or 94. Also, she once told me she was going to call it a day at the end of the year, but of course come the following January, she was happily open again as usual.
Unfortunately, my fairly regular visits stopped due to the pandemic, but looking online one day, I read that she’d passed away. Hardly a surprise of course, but the shop still seemed to be open, so I wasn’t sure if the stories were true or not. Then, when walking by last week, I spoke to a local who confirmed that she had indeed died. Last year if he remembered correctly. Perhaps more surprising was confirmation that the shop is still going, as the daughter has now taken it over. That said, on this occasion at least, the quiet scene and closed shutters seemed appropriate, and yet at the same time it was a long life, and one that was spent doing what she clearly enjoyed doing. Longevity is a bit of a lottery of course, but managing the latter is definitely something to celebrate.