We never know when it’ll happen, one Friday after school a child that has been popping into our shop for years, pocket money burning a hole in their pocket, will simply not be there. Perhaps it doesn’t occur to parents, and it almost certainly doesn’t occur to the children themselves, but once these children are gone we toy shop folk do miss them.
That child has visited our shop since they were small, in some cases (Fun Junction has been around long enough now) we may have even seen them first arrive in a pram or buggy.
We’ve watched them grow up, developing their tastes, and their personalities, and it’s been fun. It’s a tough day when we realise that a regular wee visitor hasn’t been in for a while. We might occasionally see them shuffle in behind a younger sibling, reluctantly going into a shop that they feel they’ve outgrown. However, more often than not, we’ll only notice their absence when we spot them out with their friends and realise that it’s been a while since we last saw them.
Yet another child is growing up, now too old for toys. Some time, many months before, they’ll have made their last trip to the toy shop and neither the salesperson nor the child themselves will have known it was their last visit. We don’t really get to say goodbye but we like to think that they enjoyed the experiences they had here and that the toys they bought served them well and brought them to worlds of imagination, excitement, and fun. It is an incredible privilege to be a part of someone’s childhood and we are only sorry that we never quite get to say goodbye.
Do you have any memories to share of a favourite toy shop from your childhood? What was it that really added something to your own trips to the toy shop? Feel free to share your experiences in the comments below. (My own personal one is of the amazing, almost legendary ‘Bains’ toy shop in Crieff. It was an absolute cavalcade of toys, and a magical place to visit with a pocketful of pocket money. I feel really privileged that I grew up with such an incredible shop right on my doorstep.)
All the best, John
(John is our resident toy blogger, he has his own site over at John the Toy Shop Guy and always welcomes a visit)