My Book Club Location

This is the first post about book clubs I will be featuring on my blog once a month. I want to start out by discribing to you the Location of the book clubs that I run. Here is a sneak peek into what I go through in setting up the meetings I have inside the Christian Book Store I work at.

A woman rushes into the book store and yells to me “Do you sell books here?”

I almost burst out laughing and said are you serious? I could tell she is.
“Yes, we do. What kind of book are you looking for?” I almost blew that, “Thank you God, for your help with this one.”

“Brittany, I’m going to get the tables and chairs ready for the meeting tonight. I’ve got to change out of this uniform and into street clothes. Call me if you need help.” I’m in a hurry, hopefully no one will recognize me out of my uniform—that’s the plan anyway. It works for Clark Kent.

Now dressed in jeans and sneakers I’ve found the table I need standing up. Where is the cart I use to push these heavy tables to the book club location? OHMYGOSH!! I’ve just spotted a wheel missing on the cart. I won’t be using that tonight. Had I know about the tire I would have started sooner. This is going to take forever.

I drag the long table to the book club spot. It’s a good—sized area big enough to hold 40 chairs in front of a big screen TV. I need help. Who am I kidding? I’m not wonder woman. I get to the intercom and say, “Attention staff, David to must” why didn’t I think of him helping me in the first place?

I make my way to the front of the store to get the folding chairs and bring them to the back of the store where we meet, when I hear someone calling me.

“Miss, Excuse Me. Do you work here?” I stop and put down the chairs I’m carrying so I can help the customer. “Yes, I do.” (Guess my disguise didn’t work as good as it does for Superman).

“I’m trying to find a book I heard about on the radio the other day. Did you hear the program? I can’t remember who the author is – I think their name starts with M or was it an S? It has to do with something I could really use– Oh; I forgot what they said it was about. Have people been coming in the store buying a book they heard about on the radio? I’m sorry this is all I remember but I’d like to buy that book.”

“Is the book Beauty Secrets of the Bible? We’ve had several people ask for that in the last couple of days. It’s by Ginger Garrett.”

“Yes, that’s the book. Do you have any in the store? Where can I find it?”

I’m thankful I guessed the correct book. I drop my chairs, and quickly make my way to the shelf; I grab a copy, and hand it to the customer.”

“Thanks so much – you’ve made my day.”

I run into David who has set up the table and got my book club containers. “Hey Nora, want me to help you set up chairs?” The phone in the store starts to ring. One of us has to go and answer it so I say, “Hey David if you help me with the chairs I’ll catch the phone!”

Barreling to the phone which we’re to be answer on the third ring, I help the customer with their music question. My cover is blown so now a customer in the store asks me to look up a title to see if the CD he wants is in the store. The computer says several CD’s are available, so I take him to the CD shelf. He smiles big, and says, “Thanks.”

“You’re welcome,” I hurry to get the rest of the chairs to my book club spot. To my great surprise, David has gotten all of the chairs set up, he’s been busy. Wonderful, I head to the break room to start making the tea and coffee. On my way to the book club spot, I grab my goodies out of the refrigerator, along with two table clothes.

I open my containers to get plates, spoons, forks, plastic coffee cups, napkins, and assorted teas for the meeting. I put on the table cloth, and then arrange the items along with a package of cookies and a few other goodies.

I push a T-shirt rack and another small display to block off people’s path across the store so they won’t interrupt our book club meeting. I look over the area to see what’s missing, when I notice a customer reaching for a cookie I just put on the table. I panic, but then I see David explain to the woman these cookies are for a book club meeting only. David to the rescue again!

Which reminds me, where’s my sign that says “FICTION BOOK CLUB IN PROGRESS” Please join us next month. ALL WELCOME. Take information about book club with you.

My sign helps cut down on the customers going to fellow workers to ask, “What’s going on? What are those ladies laughing about? “It’s also a way of advertising book club and up-coming events.

Great there it is. I’m all set up – I just have to get the stool for the author to sit on. I’m making my way to the back room when I hear, “Miss. Miss! Do you work here?” Once again my disguise fails me. I stop and say, “Yes, I do. How can I help you?”

“I’ve just heard this amazing song on the radio. It’s so powerful. It would be perfect for my friend. They play it all the time on the radio. I’m not sure of the title. The words go something like “I’m there for you…. Something, something. You are not alone…something ,something .give your pain to me… Something.” She then breaks out in song belting out the melody to me. Now I’m trying my best to hold it together here. I’m afraid I’m not going to be as successful as I was with the book earlier. I have NO idea what she’s talking about.

I then say,” You know you can email or call the radio station. There’re really good about giving out the titles of songs. You can tell them what time of day you hear the song and the little bit you shared with me. I’m sure that they’ll help you find it, especially when you say it’s played all the time.”

“But I need the song today. Is there anyone else that can help me right now?

“Yes, there is.” I go over to the phone and hit the intercom “Attention staff, Jean to music, customer needs help.”

I see the lady go to the music dept to wait for Jean. Oh my, Jean is in for a treat. Funny thing is Jean probably will be able to figure out the song this lady is talking about. She’s phenomenal.

I’ve totally forgotten what was I doing? I look at my watch; my ladies will be here any minute. Now I remember. I was on my way to get a stool for the author. I’m worn out and book club hasn’t even started. Working at the book store where the meetings are held can be a challenge, but I love it. All things considered, I enjoy it better than the noisy cafĂ© alternative.

There are so many different places to have book club meetings. In addition to the above listings, there is the variety of members’ homes, residential clubhouses, restaurants, museums, and quilt stores. I’ve even heard of a woman having meetings at her beauty salon. No kidding! The possibilities are endless. You have to weigh the pros and cons to each location you consider.

Happy hunting for your book club location!
Nora St.Laurent
Book Club Servant Leader


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