And we're back....
Posted by Michele Hehir on 8th Feb 2015
So we're back after our mini refurb & we're blown away by all the lovely comments over the last few days and online..really, it means the world to us!
This little blog entry is just filling you in on how this came about & how we got through it!!
A few months ago after several years of thinking about it!, we decided to put down a new floor..Since everything would have to be cleared out, we reckoned it was an ideal time to paint the ceiling too, to brighten the shop.
Keeping the job to a minimum, the idea was to try to utilise as much of our existing displays as possible just to freshen them up. Brian had this idea about wallpapering the slat paneling, which was everywhere throughout the shop..I couldn't see it so we called in the fabulous Amelia who gave the go ahead! And she had quite a few more tips as well!!
We had envisioned closing for a few weeks and just enjoying a bit of time out in Clifden but that was not to be the case..we had to keep pushing out the shop closing date as we were so busy & I could only think of unforeseen delays pushing us further & further into February. We closed on Wednesday 13th Jan & Dara (our painter extraordinaire) moved in for the weekend and transformed the lower section of the shop..The ceiling, slat panelling, you name it- if it didn't move, it got a coat of paint! Guy was due in from Thailand on Thurs to lay the floor and pretty much everything else..Brian was promoted to Guy's right hand man & the two of them, joined at the arthritic hips & knees, went powering through it..(when I say powering, both of these boyos are in their 50s so it's a relative term)
All I had to do was keep them fed & watered!! (And boy was that job never ending!!)
Week 2,we had the lower level painted & the floor laid so everything that we had moved up to the upper level 2weeks previously had to be moved again to the lower level..Our superwomen Maria & Maureen come in to move it all and we begin again- Dara, Guy & Brian , and the odd visit from Frank, making sure no one has electrocuted themselves!! The joints (the body ones that is!!) are sounding a little louder this week and running a nightly Epsom salts bath for Brian after his 14hour (Yes, 14hour!!!) shift just became part of the routine.
Funny story, Brian & Guy, had to move a huge dresser into the old Super Valu for storage..too big for the van..so they had to carry it from Hehirs to Supervalu manually! They may have been struggling a little at the top of Market Street, when a certain witty butcher spied them and summed up the scenario in one sentence which clearly resonated throughout Market street; "No Country for Old Men Lads". I think the unit had to be temporaily dropped as they fell around laughing!! Touché Seamus Mannion, touché!!!
Ronan was commissioned with a new counter, using wood from the Marconi Station that Brian's grandfather had used in the shop in his day. Brian again, had very clear specs, and Ronan, being the professional he is, produced what we think is fabulous, and has done so with so much care & respect for the wood. As many of you know, Ronan is a genius when it comes to anything to do with carpentry !!
Week 3, running a little over our original time frame, and with some serious financial juggling, we reckon we'll stick with it & do it right (Sorry Mr Bank Manager but it will be worth it!!)
Dara is finished but Guy has been hovering for the last few days to see what he can do to help. Maria , Maureen & I have the fun part, getting everything back on shelves and looking pretty..we have lots of new stock in as well so we have a lot to do. It's a bit overwhelming but the girls are working like superwomen & keep telling me we'll get there!! there was a few days I couldn't see an end and there have been many sleepless nights! Amelia is down, sprinkling her magic around but I'll be keeping herself & Brian separated- no more renovations for the next 5years!
As we close the doors on our first weeekend back, we are exhausted but exhilarated..your visits, comments, compliments make it all worthwhile..But I do want to tell you about all the work Brian himself has done over the last few weeks..the crazy, crazy 12-14hour days he has put in every day since we closed, all for the love of this building that he still has, 3 generations on.. I think it's like himself - solid, honourable and steadfast!!! So while we love our new look, & believe me, we really do, i think in particular, there is an immense pride for Brian in his steadfast dedication to doing this particular job. Well done Brian on a job so well done - you really are wonderful & we're all very proud of you..
So now it's over to you guys & we're delighted to be back in business again. We missed you guys & we hope we can serve you for another few years .
Thanks for all your support and good wishes throughout the refurb and all the love online..we couldn't do it without ye!
Lotsa luv mx