I have lived in Coeur d’Alene since 1989. Obviously there have been many changes that have occurred since my arrival. Some of those changes have been wonderful and some make me a bit sad. The closing of the Sherman Hardware Store is one that makes me a bit sad.
Not long ago I took a very old Aladdin Lamp into Sherman Hardware for repair. They are one of the only places I know of that stock Aladdin parts. I cannot remember when I have received such great customer service. Figuring out the necessary parts was extremely time consuming for the sales assistant. Some of the parts had to be obtained elsewhere. However, the salespeople at Sherman Hardware were willing to spend their time on several occasions, showing me where to obtain the parts they did not have in stock and how to reassemble various pieces of my lamp.
I know that larger hardware stores certainly are able to stock more items and are often less expensive. However, there are certain things that we lose as the smaller, non-franchise stores continue to disappear. One of those things is a feeling of neighborhood connection that comes from getting to know the people that own or run the stores, and a sense of familiarity that develops over time.
In the end, we were able to restore my lamp — which happens to be a very sentimental family lamp. I will continue to value all of the help they gave long after Sherman Hardware has closed. I will miss the small town feel and the wonderful customer service I received.