When Fort Frederica first closed in April, one of the first projects I helped with was the bookstore inventory. Always before, when I have helped with inventory, it has been while the park and the bookstore were open. The park closing made the bookstore inventory a lot easier and we took our time doing doing it.
We have two Ellens working at the park. Ranger Ellen and Ellen P who is in charge of the bookstore. Ellen P is a retired teacher who is also redeveloping the archaeology education program and taking charge of field trips. Working with Ellen P has been a joy because she is organized, on top of things, and fun to be around. Since she took charge of the bookstore in August we have a lot of new products. But we also got a new computerized “cash register” (iPad) and we are not sure things are being entered in the proper category. So Ellen P decided to take an inventory and start fresh after the park opens again.
I agreed to help, and spent two days counting the little things. Magnets, postcards, key chains, pencils, etc. These are the things we have 50 to 500 of, so they are a pain to count. But we need an accurate count of them, especially so we can monitor if some of the small things are “walking” out of the store. Ellen P has been concerned about the number of things that have gone missing. Are they really missing or have we just missed a stash of them somewhere? Doing the bookstore inventory helped us figure it out.
I like to count and am good at doing detail work, so it was no hardship to sit on the floor and count. One interesting part of doing the inventory was seeing the printout of how many of an item was sold in the last six months. Some books sell out on a regular basis. Others, we haven’t sold a single one in the four years I’ve been working at Fort Frederica. Ellen P put some of the books that don’t sell on a sale display – but they still aren’t selling!
I enjoy doing precise work like a bookstore inventory. Helping Ellen P was something I was glad to do.