Having a small business isn’t easy, especially now.
In fact, Tommy and Jenni Brucato say they haven’t had a customer in nearly three months.
“We’ve had to refund over 1,000 tickets,” Tommy said.
And yet, all seven of their employees still show up every day, and every day, they wait.
“They’re anticipating that people are gonna come any minute, and we’re very excited for when that can finally happen,” Jenni said.
Until then, their employees are out to pasture.
Those employees, which are actually seven llamas, are eagerly waiting on customers to return.
“They’re constantly staring over the fence wondering, ‘Why aren’t the people here yet? They’re all months behind,’” Tommy said.
Before coronavirus, dozens of people would come to Shangrillama in Royse City every weekend to see the llamas.
Eve since coronavirus broke out, they still want to.
“Every day we receive either one phone call, three emails,” said Jenni. “Everyone’s asking, ‘How can we meet the llamas without coming to you?’”
Thanks to an internet connection, the llamas are back in business.
Customers can sign up online and do a llama meet ‘n greet, learn llama facts or answer llama trivia.
The llamas can even crash your meeting.
Tommy and Jenni say their llamas love seeing people as much as people love seeing them.
“They’re very intelligent critters so they know, ‘that is a person right there. Who is this person? I want to look at them,’” said Jenni. “And so they lean in toward the camera.”
It’s not quite the same as seeing llamas in person, but at a time like this, it can be a nice distraction.
“Just being able to help people have a smile is a great thing to do,” Tommy said.
Even if it’s a smile only a mama llama could love.