Well, what strange times we live in! As the global situation around the COVID19 virus continues to unfold, it's become increasingly clear: we need drastic action quickly. For me, there's not much I can do, but I'll do the bit I can do, so as of March 24, 2020, the doors of our Hobart store are closing for now.
We'll continue to trade online, as we did for several years before the physical store opened. I feel very fortunate to have a strong history with online trading and continually grateful for the support of our friends (customers doesn't seem like the right word!) around Tasmania, Australia and Earth as we all navigate unprecedented challenges together.
So! A few key points on the practical stuff:
1. We are most definitely open for business via our online store and Reverb store.
2. Our preferred couriers are still operating as usual, with some extra hygiene measures in place, so at this stage there's no issues getting your orders out the door and delivered in a timely fashion.
3. All lay-bys and consignments are still valid; we'll be taking payments via bank transfer, credit/debit card, PayPal and cash by appointment.
4. You can make an appointment to check out an item, make a payment, collect repairs and consignments and whatever else you need to do via this form. Sensible social distancing and hygiene measures will be in place.
5. I'll be continually assessing the situation and we'll announce re-opening if and when it's safe and beneficial to do so.
It's impossible to know how things will work out in the long run, both in terms of this little business and the overall landscape of society. It's entirely possible Topshelf won't survive the COVID19 crisis, but it's equally possible we'll continue to adapt and thrive for decades to come. Instead of worrying, I'm intending to keep on the front foot and make the best decisions I can with the limited information available. A huge amount of our friends who buy from us rely on a functioning entertainment and hospitality industry for income, and to those who have effectively lost their job overnight: we love you and we want to help! It might take quite some time for the threat from the pandemic to subside, but eventually, we as the creative community will rebound and once more spread joy, love, peace and connectedness via music again; here's hoping we can ride that wave together.
We're all facing huge challenges and making tough decisions. Let's be kind and graceful to each other. Let's look after those hit worst by the pandemic and associated pandemonium. Let's be hopeful, creative and bold. Let's do what's necessary to defeat this formidable foe together. Let's be thankful for the good things we have and the precious people in our lives everyday.
Muchas gracias amigos!