When we walked into Hammer Jewelers in our hometown, we couldn't have known what was to come. Josey hadn't been in the store before and I encouraged her to look there for a signet ring because I knew she'd like the antique counters and the personal feel. She quickly zeroed in on this ring and declared the search was over, and as she was deciding on engraving options, the owner asked if she had a job. Mr. Hammer told her to fill out an application and bring it back if she wanted to work. Wow! Really?
Yeah, really. Jo started work there in the fall of 2013 just about the time her world started falling completely apart. Through surgeries, unknown illnesses, and finally a diagnosis of Lyme and co-infections, Josey has kept her job at Hammer Jewelers. When she was too sick to move, too out-of-it to even call in sick, in too much pain to talk, Mr. Hammer wouldn't let her quit her job. There were months when she didn't come in at all but he always left her on the payroll and was not only understanding, but encouraging.
Mr. Hammer and Josey have a unique relationship. It's less like an employee/employer relationship and more like an odd friendship. (Josey says it's more like a giraffe and monkey friendship. I'm not sure which is which.) Sometimes when customers come in, they ask if she's his daughter. They both think that's hilarious, and either one of them may go off on a rant of some kind when there are no customers. Today, he asked if she has an Irish temper - after he asked her a question he KNEW would set her off. She's respectful but sassy, and he appreciates that.
Hammer Jewelers is truly a blessing. It came disguised as a signet ring and a job offer, and turned out to be stability and a lifeline. Thank you, Mr. Hammer.