To Close or Not to Close

What’s the dilemma this week?  Well, for as long as I can remember, there aren’t many storms, hurricanes, or blizzards that change our hours of operation here at the Farm Market.  I have always believed growing up that it would take a severe natural disaster to close the store and cancel our staff from coming in.  I am sure that many of you who have lived in Guilford for years can attest to this.  It has always been ingrained in us (the generations of Bishop Family members) that we need to be open for our community because you never know when someone needs us, even if just for a gallon of milk or eggs!  Over the past decade, it has become a little more lax, and we have had the very occasional delayed opening or early closing, but we usually make the call at the last minute, just in case the forecast predictions were wrong (which we all know is skeptical, especially when it comes to snowfall amounts).

Many of you know Alicia. She is one of our amazing Front End Supervisors and has worked with us for over 25 years!  We were talking the other day about how many storms she has driven in to be here and joking about how we never close.  She recalled a memory of a big snow storm years ago that was actively happening during business hours.  The roads and our store were desolate, and only a skeleton crew was working.  She said the roads were terrible and no one should have been on them.  Out of nowhere, a little old man pulled into the parking lot and walked into the store.  Of course Alicia struck up a conversation with him as he proceeded to the checkout line.  He approached her and put two single bananas on the counter.  That’s it…two bananas!! Come to find out, he drove all the way from North Branford.  In normal weather, North Branford isn’t far, but in a snowstorm??? That could take forever!  All for two bananas!  To this day, we wonder what was so important that he needed 2 bananas to risk his life on the roads? 

So…what to do for the storm this weekend? That is the question that I have been wondering all week.  Watching the weather app on my phone, getting the latest news alerts from every news station, wondering “What is Saturday going to look like for Bishop’s?”  I laid out the different scenarios on Wednesday to prepare our managers, knowing that we could be making the call at 7am on Saturday morning.  But when I woke up this morning to the new models and a forecast that is now predicting 18” to 24” of snow, with the major impact of the storm during business hours, I took the plunge and made the call…(Previous generations, hold onto your hats)!  We will be CLOSED on Saturday, January 29th!  A snow day for all!  I believe this may go down in the Bishop’s Book of History!  Making the decision to close the business 24 hours before a storm even hits, unheard of!  Although previous generations may not approve of making the call so early, I am going with my gut on this one.  It ultimately came down to the safety of our team members as well as all of you.  There is no need to put yourselves at risk driving through the storm unless it’s an emergency!  I am hoping that you were able to get out yesterday or today to stock up on your essentials like milk, eggs, bread, and of course bananas!!  Enjoy the storm in the warmth of your homes, oohing and ahhing over the beauty of the fresh fallen snow.  Go sledding and build a snowman or snowperson with your kids. Enjoy the fact that we live in New England and are fortunate to experience what every season has to offer.  For those of you who have to be on the roads as first responders in a number of different fields of work, please be safe, and we thank you for your service!


Be well and Be safe!