When you are ‘out of misery’ you can do two things. You forget about how it was and move on. Or you learn from it and help others, because you understand. The latter happened in La Roche- en-Ardenne, my hometown. About fifteen years ago a second hand shop with second hand items at real second hand prices was established. So ‘Epi’cintre’ became a fact. After a while the lady who started with this project had to stop. But luckily there are volunteers. Solange Bastogne is such a volunteer. When asked by the deanery if she could take over, she said yes.
Now four years later she manages the second hand shop in the rue Val du Bronze, together with four other volunteers. The shop is doing well. Gifts are plentiful. They need to be processed, to be checked, washed and repaired. It requires a lot of work. Because the products the shop offer has to be good. The offer is varied, add some flair to the wardrobe or to the living space, in the meanwhile they reduce the carbon footprint of production and help all kind of people to save money. But there is much more… Every penny that goes over the counter goes to charity. Last year twelve associations were supported, but also individuals were helped. What remains of the stock goes to another good initiative. So nothing is lost. And…There is also the hospitality….the kind words, the helpful hands. Always a cup of delicious coffee and some sweets await the visitor. It brings people and stories together, information is exchanged. You learn more about La Roche-en-Ardenne and the region. Maybe this is the reason why tourists find their way to this initiative. Indeed, sometimes one can find typical objects of the region. I discovered another delightful object that makes me stay still, dream….and at the end….that I can purchase for little money.
( click thumbnail to enlarge picture)
Epi’cintre, or Second Hand shop rue Val du Bronze is open on Saturday from 9 till 12 o’clock and on Tuesday from 2 till 5 o’clock