There’s a little store along the 101 in Encinitas, California that only yesterday became a favorite. And that is due to the lively banter I enjoyed with an employee who helped me look around. It was the experience that made me return today on a date with my wife. I took a picture of one birdbath and texted to my spouse. She was in a meeting and after a few moments responded, “Pretty”. The lady at The Mad Potter, when I relayed Sheri’s comment, asked, “Did she say “Pretty”, or ‘that’s pretty’? The difference is significant. If a woman says “that’s pretty”, it means, ‘well, you apparently like it’. But simply ‘pretty’, is a sign she likes it.” Text messages with pictures may suggest something, but it was the date today which built on the experience – and dug into my wallet.
The Mad Potter is one of the little shops along the El Camino Real in northern San Diego County that I may have seen over several years when I worked in Carlsbad and took creative detours homeward during the agonizing traffic commutes. However, it is in this post-pandemic, semi-retirement that I am making a total overhaul of our home’s landscaping. I have been looking at little mom n’ pop shops and nurseries to find specific low-water need and heat-tolerant California plants, pottery, bird baths and today, a fountain that will tie the hummingbird, butterfly and bee garden and (human) guest-friendly design.
Though my wife has given me the task of deciding the layout and features in our yard, any prudent husband always seeks his wife’s opinion. And with a stop at a favorite coffee house, just down the street, it was both date and a shopping trip. And a plant caught her eye as we were getting assistance loading our treasures of birdbath, fountain, and ceramic tortoise. There is a saying that is as true today as it was when I held a retail sales job a lifetime ago: people do not like being “sold”; however, people love to “buy”. The other truth that is worth repeating is when an employee loves their work the shop prospers. I joked that I may open an account with them. There are a few more tortoises the Mrs has her eye on.