We never caught her name, but we’ll never forget her. She was our first customer. It was July 7th, 1999, just moments into our opening night party. As she got to the front counter and made her purchase the staff nearly erupted in cheers. “DON’T LEAVE YET!!!” we barked, “WE HAVE TO TAKE YOUR PICTURE! WE’RE GONNA FRAME YOUR MONEY!! HOLD UP YOUR SHOPPING BAG SO IT SHOWS IN THE PHOTO!!!” Soon she was blasted with flashbulbs and given a round of applause. But if our nameless First Customer looks a bit nonplussed in the photo it’s because she had no idea why we were so excited. “Are you a new store or something?” she innocently asked, paying no mind to the deli spread, a selection of chilled beverages, the free-flowing wine, and a big cake with a huge green “Boomerang” written across the top of it. “Yes!” we exclaimed, “And you’re our FIRST OFFICIAL CUSTOMER!” “Oh,” she said, clearly not sharing our enthusiasm for this historic moment. “I was just passing through town to get coffee and this looked like a nice store…”
Even though Jane Doe may not have appreciated her Very First Customer status, we sure did, and thirteen years later her picture still hangs on our office wall. But we never did frame her money. She paid with a fifty.