20 Mar 2020

Coronavirus: Supermarket worker serenades stressed shoppers

2:37 pm on 20 March 2020

A person who sang over the loudspeaker to stressed shoppers in a Levin supermarket is being celebrated for lifting people's moods in dark times.

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Photo: 123RF

Beverley Dowling said she was doing a big shop at Levin New World yesterday lunchtime in a packed supermarket full of worried-looking older people.

She said she was trying to just "get in, get out".

The shop's intercom crackled to life with the usual announcements but then the person began to sing "if you're happy and you know it clap your hands".

"I just fell to pieces and so did everybody around me. There was clapping and cheering and lots of giggles and it totally changed the mood of the shop - it was just brilliant.

"A lot of the stressed faces turned into smiles, the wrinkles became crinkles. It was just really, really positive."

  • If you have symptoms of the coronavirus, call the NZ Covid-19 Healthline on 0800 358 5453 (+64 9 358 5453 for international SIMs)

Dowling said the dark humour of that choice of song worked well for the older crowd.

"Some people could have taken it very cynically but it was just the right thing at the right time and she had the right audience.

"Because it was mostly pensioners - post-pension pay day, and they'd all grown up with the song - they knew the sentiment behind it they knew how that song could be used in an ironical way.

"She just hit the audience, she nailed it."

Dowling said she shared what happened on social media, prompting hundreds of responses and sharing the enjoyment wider.

"People [are] really wanting to hear some good news and something fun and so that one act affected a significant amount of people in New World but then it carried on, it's like a ripple effect."

"That [person] did a good thing yesterday."

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