Happily exhausted from the Palmer-Wirfs Portland Expo show
(temperatures climbing to nearly 100 degrees!),
we've arrived safely home in Bellingham--greeted by comfortable weather
conditions around 70 degrees (we're soooo spoiled!!).
It's difficult to gauge how successful any show is going to be in
challenging economic times. I'm always tremendously grateful to
have a show that doesn't land me in the dog house.
Palmer-Wirfs Portland Expo certainly brought in the crowds!!
The buying public was a bit more reserved than in previous shows,
and--thank goodness--they were buying!!
Having said that, customers "just looking" at either merchandise
itself--or trying to determine
market values for something they own--does not help dealers afford
to return year after year. Purchases are absolutely essential.
Demands of customers have changed, both in terms of perceived financial
"value" of an item, as well as the desirability of the merchandise
itself . . . leaving many hard-working dealers with inventory
that may not meet the criteria of the new--increasingly younger--buying public.
This is a new "dance partner" . . . for both dealer and customer, and we
have to communicate and be fair with each other in seeking ways
to have our needs met. This is not "business as usual" for any of us, that's for sure.
But the challenge is exciting and keeps us fresh!
There is a new balance evolving, but it feels very much like walking a tight-rope
at times. Being just a bit *scared* keeps us on our toes, right?!
Many cultural, technical and political changes are certainly stirring the pot.
But humanity has shown tremendous resiliance, creativity and
drive over the years . . . the present being no exception.
It's easy to get discouraged . . . not knowing what the next right
step might be. It's important to remember the singular characteristic
that binds us to each other in this industry: PASSION!!
But passion is a two-sided coin (like love); and sometimes our interests
may collide--where creative jealousies and competition rule, instead of
mutual collaboration and sharing.
Hey, it's human--but we're all on the same, ultimate path. Soooo . . .
. . . like this beautiful customer, let's ENJOY that path together!!!
I thank each and every one of you for stopping by my booth--if only
to say hello. We share space on this amazing earth and are so blessed to be doing so!
THANK YOU Portland for another great show!!!
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