Let’s protect our stores

This is an anecdote. A store disappeared from a village in southern Bohemia. The shopkeeper claimed that people had everything they wanted and would drive to the nearest supermarket to buy what they didn\’t have. But that did not happen. Some time later, a new resident decided to open a store. It was packed, he had no worries about business, and people admired him. Why? Most people in the village are weekend visitors. They don\’t have anyone to tend to their gardens during the week, so they cook only the bare minimum, and they like to relax on their days off, not run around the rabbit hutch. Yes, they bring their own supplies, but if they run out of chips or want a drink in the evening, the last thing they feel like doing is getting in the car and driving 30 minutes somewhere.
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These people are both the bane and the salvation of the small store. They only shop on weekends and are not around at other times of the day. So what do weekday shopkeepers have to live on? The lack of a steady income due to migration to the city is the main reason why so many stores are closing. On the other hand, the behavior of the villagers on weekends also reveals what type of small stores can survive. There is the possibility of a mobile store that could be an extension of the stores in the larger towns. It could go to people who leave this town on the weekends. It might not cost a lot of money. Just load a van with what people miss most during the weekends and park it in the town square at a set time. This is how the yellow Family Frost vehicle ran.
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The village needs a store, not only for shopping, but also as a meeting place. A mobile van standing in the village square, even if only for two hours, means that people have to leave their living rooms and yards to see who lives in the house next door. The van\’s open door might give them an idea for their first neighborhood meeting or pond cleanup. At least buying some chocolate would solve any problem.