The Smell Turned Bad

, , , , | Working | April 3, 2019

(I visit a town that has a street full of vibrant market stalls, each occupied by vendors selling all kinds of things ranging from clothes and jewellery to confectionary and wine. Most of what’s being sold is handmade by the vendors themselves. I love all things scented, and I work for a well-known store that prides itself on its cruelty-free and vegan cosmetics, such as bath bombs and soaps, among other things. I can identify most essential oils by scent and know what they’re all used for. So, I’m delighted when I happen upon a stall that sells handmade bath bombs, incense, scented candles sculpted into cute little shapes, essential oils, etc. It’s been a lovely day so far and I’m in a pretty good mood, so when the vendor acknowledges me I reply with a big smile.)

Me: “Hi! These are all lovely! Did you make these?”

Vendor: “Yep. See anything you like so far?”

Me: “Yeah!” *picking up a couple of honeycomb-scented candles to smell them* “I sure do love my smellies. I work at [Store], so I’m obsessed with anything colourful and scented!”

(The vendor is no longer even looking at me, and immediately cuts me off before I can say anything else, scowling as if I’ve just shot his dog.)

Vendor: “So, what are you doing here, then? [Store] is s***! None of their stuff is natural, anyway. They just stuff their crap full of chemicals. This stuff is natural. What have you come here for?! Why don’t you just go to [Store]?!”

(He accompanied this mini-rant with a very dismissive and somewhat aggressive arm gesture. Stunned by his rudeness, I silently put down the candles I was planning to buy and walked away without another word.)

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