Ahh, the holiday season is well under way! Stores stocked with Christmas trees right after Halloween masks were ripped from the shelves. It seems like Thanksgiving fell under the radar this year.
As a long-term customer service representative with a healthy past of retail experience, I generally mark the major consumer season between Halloween and Valentine’s Day. Then you have your random Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and the fourth of July, but those work best for Hallmark and pyrotechnic companies. Memorial Day and Labor Day serve as last ditch effort sale days. As a rule of thumb, you start to see more shoppers around Halloween, growing in number and never slacking until right after Christmas. Then, if you work in jewelry you might see a nice spike around February 14th.
Of course, all of this became archaic knowledge when I started working at ACE. The travel industry simply works against the grain of normal retail. People don’t think to get away from it all when they get so entrenched in making lists and checking them twice. It seems funny to me now, hacking up the year and all of its beautiful holidays–days of thanks for good meals and love for one another–into quarterly profit margins and net sales charts. If moving to West Virginia has served me well it did so best as a good outside position for looking within. It’s hard to remember what you’re thankful for with Cyber-Monday/Week looming behind the cranberry sauce.
We didn’t have Black Friday at ACE (and probably never will). We don’t offer “door busters”, mostly because we don’t have a door to bust. We don’t really have “early bird” specials because we know you don’t want to line up in the cold at 5am just as much as we don’t want to be here that early either.
We’re a realistic company. Our “hottest toys” might include the new Bridge Walk Tour and an expanded and upgraded Zip Line Canopy Tour, which you are welcome to enjoy at your leisure. There really is something for everybody here at ACE, and we don’t have shelves for you to find empty.
Recently a customer I was helping on the phone asked of me, “Will there be crowds of people while I’m there?” He was coming in with his wife and newborn child to spend their first Thanksgiving together in a quiet cabin in the woods. The last thing he wanted for his wonderful weekend plan was to find the same frenzied folks he was trying to avoid in the city. I told him that our offices would be closed on Thanksgiving Day and that truth be told, he would be hard pressed to find a single soul out here.
He sighed with relief and said, “Perfect!”
And I do hope his stay is perfect. It swelled my chest with pride and nearly brought a tear to my eye being able to give this man the peace and quiet he so desired for Thanksgiving with his new family. I hope they will come back every year and make a tradition of it. Their family, as well as yours, will always be a welcome addition to our own.
So, I have to ask, even though Thanksgiving is over, what are you thankful for? I’d really love to know! I’m thankful for a fresh start in beautiful land full of fresh air. I’m thankful for my wonderful family (and my friends so wonderful I count them as family, too). I’m thankful for my great job at a great place doing great things for people who just need a break. My heart felt wishes to all of you: may you find a slice of peace amongst the madness this year.
I’ll be here to help when you need it.
Happy holidays, folks.