Please support the Daily Hampshire Gazette’s COVID-19 coverage

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the local economy — and many of the advertisers who support our work — to a near standstill. During this unprecedented challenge, we continue to make our coronavirus coverage free to everyone at because we feel our most critical mission is to deliver vital information to our communities. If you believe local news is essential, especially during this crisis, please donate.

Thank you for your support of the Gazette.

Michael Moses, Publisher

Kate Collins: Cashier Nancy and the birthday cards

Published: 5/21/2020 2:16:43 PM
Modified: 5/21/2020 2:16:33 PM

Before we were risking our lives to buy groceries, my friend Jack would always try to be on the line to check out with Nancy.

Cashier Nancy, according to Jack, is the go to resister. She shares jokes and laughter and the Big Y deals. If you miss something on sale, she will get you caught up.

Last month, Jack’s partner had a birthday that couldn’t be celebrated together with family or friends. So Jack went to Big Y and purchased a couple of dozen birthday cards to pass out among his friends and neighbors in Laurel Park.

The mission was to inundate Jack’s partner in good wishes, sending the cards by mail or sliding them under the door to their cottage or giving them in person. At the check-out counter, Nancy of course wondered why Jack had basically cleaned out the current stock of birthday cards, so Jack let her in on the plan.

When Jack returned to Big Y to shop, he found that Nancy created a book of birthday greetings and jokes with her own illustrations, safely sealed in zip lock. Jack is a person who appreciates small gestures of kindness and appreciation, and he was so moved by what Nancy did that he couldn’t wait to tell the tale.

He wondered what he could do to let her and the folks at Big Y know how Nancy’s gesture moved him. He and I had some laughs imagining Jack showing up with musicians and balloons and putting on a show, which we both know isn’t possible in corona time.

So I said, “Why don’t we send a letter to the Gazette and see what happen?” This is that letter. There really are essential workers now, and Nancy is one of them. The people we see on our regular rounds mean a lot to us in this time of wearing masks in this pandemic. Let’s appreciate them.

Kate Collins


Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

115 Conz Street
Northampton, MA 01061


Copyright © 2019 by H.S. Gere & Sons, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy