Scary stories from a lovely place

Shopping in the rain

Last week Friday Stephen and I went to a depressing mall to buy a tent. Stephen was heading off early the next morning on a two day version of Mondo Enduro on his motorbike.

As we neared the mall the greying sky opened and water began pouring out. It was heavy. There were black clouds rolling in over Northcliff Hill that made the surroundings look like it were nighttime, rather than afternoon. The unmistakable clip-clip of small hail stones began to compromise my windshield. I was glad to arrive at the parking area before they became much bigger.

You’d think inside the mall we would have been safe from the encroaching hail storm outside. Not so. Our destination was ‘Game’, one of those large stores that sell everything but don’t end up giving you a better deal than you would get at an electrics store, nursery, toy shop or jeweler. The rain was pounding on the metal roof throughout the mall, but in Game the experience was a little more corporeal.

The ceiling has these vents evenly spaced along the roof and, bizarrely, many of these were open. At first it just seemed there were a few leaks here and there, and some well placed buckets seemed to be taking care of that. But the further we ventured into Game and the heavier the rain poured, the more the floors flooded.

There were puddles merging together like the T1000 in Terminator 2 until the entire floor was covered. Rain was pouring onto outdoor furniture, tools, kitchenware, quilts – everything a department store would sell. All of a sudden the buckets became merely comical representations of the store’s inability to deal with the outside weather.

I admired the response of the staff, it was brave. In a past life I worked in retail for many years. As I watched the staff standing around, laughing at the situation as much as we were I was impressed with their nonchalance. I was thinking of all the problems – stock damage and risk to customer safety to begin with. But there were either no managers around or they were enjoying the comedy too.

The pictures don’t do it justice – you had to be there.

Open vents

Responsible staff member

The bucket working hard


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This entry was posted on March 30, 2011 by in Home, Life in South Africa.
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