A tale of two off licences. My local off licence, with the affection name "Open All Hours" has now closed. They were never much for actual staying open advertised hours. In fact, at 40 minutes before the evening closing time, they had pulled the shutters down. One Sunday afternoon, I ran into one of the staff who had decided not to show for work, saying that he couldn't be arsed.... and he was checking to see if anybody had opened up instead.
When challenged, staff report that they had to go home to eat. Fair enough. I was on my way home from work, I had not eaten, and I wished to pick up a few beers for the evening.
The other off licence was the branch of Oddbins at Canary Wharf (on the ground level of the DLR station concourse). Strange place Oddbins. I always get the feeling that I am not of the correct class to enter and buy some beer. Much like the first off licence, you get the feeling that you are doing them a big favour, so you had be good.
So, they have both gone. Call me old school, but I like service, a smile, conversation, a cheery goodbye, and stick to the advertised opening hours, and don't expect me to genuflect.