As I was sitting at Bill Hoofers funeral and heard what Mike Crowe had written about Bill- It brought back a flood of memories. I can remember going into Hoofers Grocery Store and the sound that the wood floors made was unique to that particular store. We would get our shopping cart and when we got to the meat department, Mom would tell Bill or Ralph how much bacon and lunch meat she needed. I did not know that bacon came prepackage until I was in high school. I just loved to go behind the counter and watch them slice our bacon. I can remember seeing that big slab of bacon all covered with pepper, then they would slice the bacon however thick you wanted it. They would layer the bacon in-between papers and wrap it up in white butchers’ paper. If you wanted liverwurst they were very nice to always put each slice between papers so the slices would not stick together. I liked liverwurst and chopped ham. Dad liked bologna. Do you remember when we learned about shredded ham? I bet that was a nightmare for the guys, but I never heard them complain.
After we got our shopping done we would roll our cart to the counter- We ran a bill so either Bill or Ralph would write down everything that we had put in our cart. That must have been quite a chore but they never seemed to mind. As you were getting checked out they would put your groceries in a nice sturdy box- And the box would either sit on the counter, if you did not have a lot of groceries or it would sit on a lower counter that was at the end of the taller counter. The lower counter was just the right height to double as chair. I thought it was nice for them to provide a spot for husbands or old people to sit while they were waiting for their wives or mates to finish up the shopping. Since we usually got a box, they would tie string around the top of the box to help hold up the sides up. I can remember wondering if they ever would run out of string, as it looked like to me that it was sort of magical how it came out of the hole in the counter from an unknown source. It did not take much to amuse me. Since we ran a bill there I thought that it was really neat, once when we went to town I got away from Mom and went into Hoofers to get an ice cream bar - Ralph asked me if I was going to pay for my ice cream I told him to just put it on the bill, he asked me if mom said it was ok. I was shocked that he thought that I would have to ask Mom. Well, Ralph was right. I should have asked Mom. I learned then, that just because you put it on the bill does not mean that you do not have to pay for it.
As time went on the Hoofers moved with the times as it got to where they did not have to write down each article that you purchased as the new fangled cash register helped them out and saved them a lot of time. They moved across the street to the old Gambles Store which is now Dave’s Pizza Oven. They had more room and could sell more products- but somehow I missed the creaky wood floors. I know that the only thing that stays the same is that the world is ever changing. We are going to miss Bill Hoofer- but it is not too late to let Ralph know what much we appreciated their store and their kindness.