My first day back from holiday was so productive that I actually managed to write most of this week's blog posts in advance! This turned out to be super lucky because on my second day back from holiday I promptly fell sick with the stomach flu.
(Thanks little kid who was coughing right behind me all the way from Atlanta.)
So I've spent all week in bed, but today I was starting to feel well enough to walk to the Shoppers Drug Mart on the corner. I figured fresh air would do me some good, and, more importantly, I was out of meds. (For anyone reading this outside of Canada: Shoppers is our biggest pharmacy chain. The equivalent of Boots or CVS.)
At first the fresh air felt great, but I wasn't in Shoppers for more than three minutes before I felt like throwing up. I asked to use the bathroom and was promptly denied. I would have pressed the issue, but the feeling had already started to pass, so I grabbed my meds and decided to head home as fast as possible.
Of course, there was a giant line at the cash register. Feeling dizzy, queasy, and all-around-awful, I went to the cash at cosmetics which had no line. The lady at the counter was chatting to the security guard and flipping through some paperwork.
"Can I please pay here?"
"If you have cosmetics you can."
I looked down at the one item in my hand and back at the line snaking its way down the store.
"Please," I asked. "I'm really sick. I can't wait in that line."
This is where you'd expect me to type out her response. EXCEPT SHE DIDN'T RESPOND AT ALL. She turned back to her paperwork and ignored me completely.
Shoppers Drug Mart has changed in recent years. Instead of being just a pharmacy, they've started featuring higher-end makeup brands to compete with stores like Sephora, and they've even introduced a grocery section. I'm all for convenience but it feels like Shoppers has lost sight of they're original purpose: to help sick people.
Refusing to let me pay for my medication at the cosmetics counter (where I've payed for items many times before without buying cosmetics) is ludicrous. Either this woman wanted to force me into buying some product I don't want or she was just too lazy to do her job. (And I work in customer service so I don't say things like that lightly.)
Now I'm wishing I actually did throw up all over their floor just to prove a point.
Change is good, but can Shoppers change without forgetting it's essential raison d'être? That many customers go to them when they're sick with the hope that they will leave feeling better, not worse.