Seibert walked a mile and a half to the store and got there at seven. He swept, made new signs, and restocked tables in order to be ready for customers when the store opened. Working in one department after another, he carried a brown bag and wrote orders in the stock room at lunch . Then he was back on the floor because that's how you made the district 's "high ten list" (ten best floor sales). He always stayed after the store closed, sometimes getting home very late. He started in Bradford at $160 a month and there was no limit on his weekly hours. The plus was learning everything: the stockroom, ticketing merchandise, presentation (including trimming windows ), and selling in every department. Eventually he learned costs; margins; office procedure; and, most important of all, what seemed to make people tick.
When spring came to Bradford, it brought floodwaters. So one night he was awakened by the screeching fire department siren. The first to arrive at the store, he pulled on his hip waders in the stockroom as the store manager and others slogged in. They put barricades up in front of the windows, then stood in the rising waters to ward off heavy flotsam carried by the annual spring flood. The waters receded by dawn and he walked home to shave, bathe, and dress. The store opened on time, half the mess already cleaned up as Seibert and his colleagues alternated mopping and sponging with serving customers.