In Japan, it's not unusual these days to find stores where only one employee does all the work. This kind of operation, known in Japanese as ワンオペ wan'ope (short for ワンマンオペレーション wanman operēshon, literally "one-person operation") exists due to labor shortages or companies seeking to reduce labor costs.

Obviously, the burden on store employees increases because they must handle all operations of the store alone at all times.

On March 6th, 2022, TikTok user hono (@honokaa__ydayo) needed to make a late-night visit to a convenience store where only one clerk was working.

When she went to the cash counter to pay, she found a hastily handwritten note.

@honokaa__ydayo 深夜コンビニ行ったら店員さんいなかった#コンビニあるある #面白い #おもしろ動画 ♬ 「ぴえん」のうた - 針スピ子

Note: "Sorry, I have abdominal pain, so I am in the restroom. Please wait a moment."

"I went to a convenience store late at night but there was no clerk. #konbini'aruaru* "

* This hashtag means "things that commonly happen at convenience stores"

You can't help but worry about the clerk's condition.

A sense of urgency is evident in the way they crossed out a letter, revealing that they had no time to think it through before writing, as they were surely in a hurry to go to the restroom.

hono waited until the clerk came back and paid for her purchases.

This video quickly got noticed on social media, eliciting comments such as:

  • "This makes me want to wait for the clerk... I would be worried, hoping they made it safely to the restroom..."
  • "It looks like she came just at the wrong time. I wonder if the clerk was okay."
  • "The clerk is only human. Things like this happens. I would wait patiently."

Unfortunately, many employees are working alone these days.

When an employee is in trouble, it's best to be lenient and understanding. And if you're really pressed for time, just go to a different store.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.