“Courage is taking those first steps to your dream even if you can’t see the path ahead.”
That saying is painted on a small sign that hangs just outside the front door of our shop. It was a gift from a friend who was aware that we were having serious reservation about our impulsive decision to buy a local, rundown grocery store. The sign is intentionally hung on a single nail so it tips off-level every day requiring us to straighten and read it each morning before we open the door and walk inside. It reminds us that life is unpredictable and that no one ever grows following a secure path.
Our journey on this path began with a dozen eggs…
My name is Joe Troiano. I am a writer (children’s books) my wife, Palma Kolansky, is a professional photographer (fashion and beauty). We were, and still are, very happy with our chosen professions. Neither of us had any retail experience or any latent desires to be merchants, bakers, cooks, bookkeepers, or waiters. Now…we perform all those functions, and many more, on a daily basis. We also never thought we would need to add the words tip-ups, jigs, spikes, mousies, shiners, and fatheads to our vocabulary. And yet we are both now well versed in all thing ice fishing. Oh…the eggs…
One Saturday morning I realized we were out of eggs. Small problem, I would just run down to the local store and buy a dozen. Big problem, the store was closed. That’s when I took my first steps on the unsecured path…I walked next door and asked the postmaster why the store was closed. “It’s for sale,” she said. My reply was, “If I go home and tell my wife it’s for sale we’ll end up buying it.” I did. And we did. That’s it! No research, no planning, no what-ifs, no experience, no lengthy discussions, just how much is it, and when can we start renovating.
Although we still can’t see the path ahead, the path we have already traveled has been full of joy, new friends, and great adventures. Our little store has won awards, garnered countless accolades, received great reviews, and more importantly has become a meeting place for all the wonderful residents of our beautiful little hamlet.
So…please come in and become a part of our continuing journey—the coffee is hot, the food is good, and just in case you ever run out…we sell eggs. —J.T. Cossayuna Lake 2016