I always feel weird snapping photos in public. I realize itâ€™s one of those things I have to â€œget overâ€ if Iâ€™m a travel writer, but whipping out a camera and taking pictures on the street makes me feel like a douchesack.
When I visited my best friend in Halifax four months ago, it wasnâ€™t exactly tourism season. Joanne, Megan and I wandered around downtown, ducking into shops and getting acquainted with the area. I refrained, mostly, from taking any photos as I didnâ€™t want to stick out. Gingerism tends to do that to a person.
A few hours passed when I realized I should probably get some freaking content for my blog, so I hesitantly took a few on the street. Then we found a gigantic bookstore, and stepped inside.
It was a fairytale for nerds. St. Johnâ€™s has one or two great used bookstores, but this was above and beyond my expectations. All it needed was a gliding bookcase ladder, and my legs would have collapsed underneath me with pleasure-shock.
I took out my camera, and took a picture from the door. Iâ€™m sure I had a huge grin slapped across my face.
Then I heard a voice.
â€œEXCUSE ME. NO PICTURES. NO PICTURES.â€ I looked at the man who had appeared to my left.
I was surprised, so I laughed nervously. Then, as I was about to apologize, he said, â€œIâ€™m not kidding. If you want to take photos, you have to buy something first.â€ His tone was pure disgust and contempt.
I was stunned. Not only did this guy call me out in the middle of the store, but he was insanely rude about it. No polite, â€œExcuse me maâ€™am, photographs are not allowed in here.â€ He treated me with utter disrespect, and embarrassed me in front of a crowd.
I really didnâ€™t know what to do; I donâ€™t react well to criticism. My friends had bolted ahead of me, so I kinda tagged along in a daze. I looked at book titles without really looking at them. Needless to say, I didnâ€™t buy anything.
Geraldine had a similar experience, but she actually confronted the store about it by writing an email. The thought never even occurred to me that I should write a letter, honestly, and I feel like now itâ€™s too late. No customer should be treated that way.
Guess what, asshat? Iâ€™m never visiting your store again, and Iâ€™ll never recommend a visit to anybody else. Give me Chapters any day over pretentious assholes.