Archive for the ‘Shopping’ Category

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The Italian glass bar

September 16, 2007

Some friends have become heavily involved in fund-raising for a local charity which is setting up a hospice to give local care to local people. All being well the first three beds should be available within the next month providing end-of-life and respite care to the terminally ill.

In cultural terms the island has, traditionally, had a slightly different approach to countries such as the UK or America. Until recently the expectation was that the terminally ill would be treated at home, by relatives, or would be hospitalised and treated even if the only point of the treatment was to make everyone feel that something was being done even if the treatment was futile. As a result hospices, respite care and even palliative care are much lacking here.

As in most places, providing such care is expensive. Each of the three beds will cost tens of thousands of Cypriot pounds to maintain each year so effective fund-raising is an ongoing challenge.

As part of the fund-raising the charity runs a shop in Limassol which does a roaring trade in clothing, books, bric-a-brac and some less obvious items. The friends concerned are currently spending large amounts of time driving around the area and collecting items that have been donated. Over drinks recently we were regaled by stories of the strange things that people offer them and the oddities that sell such as …

…. a three foot high yellow stuffed tweetie-pie which was bought by a Filipino. Why? Seems to be the only reasonable question here! Sadly they didn’t get the chance to ask so we’ll all remain baffled for the rest of time.

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… a huge old-fashioned electric typewriter taken away by an elderly local last seen cycling through Limassol with it perched on the hand bars of his bicycle …

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… and a large Italian glass drinks bar.

Apparently some of the stock is too big to put in the shop or even to hold in the storeroom so one of the volunteers has taken to using his apartment storeroom as a temporary home for large items. Things like the bar – which was offered and seemed too good to refuse – is now causing some scratched heads. If it’s too big to display in the store then how do they make people aware that they have it? Is there a ready market for a custom built Italian glass bars, professionally packaged and shipped to Cyprus and still in it’s wrapping?

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We’re not sure the photo does it justice but if there is anyone reading that has a (large) corner of their home that is crying out for such a thing and has a couple of hundred pounds to spare? Oh, and doesn’t mind a trip to Limassol to collect the thing. If you are interested, or know someone who needs such a thing, then drop us an email via our About page or leave a comment on the blog and we’ll put you in touch with the current owners of the bar.

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Follow-ups

September 8, 2007

Apparently IKEA had about 15,000 on opening day. The few reports we’ve heard all said good things.

The peace talks went nowhere apart from giving the two sides a chance to trade fresh insults. No surprises there then.

And, we’ve tweaked the blog a little and given it a small face-lift. Hope you like it :-)

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IKEA is coming

September 5, 2007

This week the island is due to get its first IKEA store. For months, no years, there has been speculation that the company was going to build a store but nothing appeared. Two months ago there was still no mention of it on IKEA’s list of stores due to open this year and then, suddenly, a huge blue building with the traditional yellow logo popped up on the outskirts of Nicosia.

Now, they are ramping up for the opening. Every single house in the area has had an brochure hand-delivered. The police are trying to work out how they will cope with the volume of customers and traffic expected at the opening. Apparently the store has capacity for 4,000 customers and the car park space for 800 cars. A quick back-of-a-fagpacket calculation says that those numbers don’t stack up. Are the hoping that each car will arrive with five people? If so, where will they stash their purchases for the return journey?

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Before we left London a store opened in Edmonton. The store is on the North Circular, the inner of two roads circling Greater London. Initial interest was a little more than the company expected and they were forced to close the store after just 30 minutes after customers stampeeded into the store in search of opening day bargains. When the car park was full people abandoned their cars on the road.

The Telegraph Battle of Ikea: 20 hurt as frenzied mob fights over £49 sofas on opening night

As it turned out once the store had settled down a little (or rather the customers!) it became our ‘local’ store as we could drive around the North Circular and be there in under half an hour. In fact, Mands once came home in sitting in the boot of the car as we’d bought a little too much that day.

It will be interesting to see how things work out with our new ‘local’ store. Hopefully the grand opening won’t cause quite so much trouble as our last local store. That said, we have heard from one person that they are planning to visit on Friday, the second day of trading ;-)