It seems to me that all forms of madness should be contained within the thirty-one days of the month of March. One would have a sense of expectancy and be prepared. What am I thinking? Just the words errand day and weekend are enough to create a perfect storm.
The day started with a list and three stops: the bank, the pharmacy, and the grocery store. I should have gotten an inclination of looming storm clouds when I arrived at the pharmacy to pick up my prescription and was told there would be a twenty minute wait. Even though I had received an automated phone call the day before informing me that it would be ready and waiting after 4 P.M. that same day. So I strolled the aisles, purchased my medication, and smilingly walked into the bright, sunny day listening to the birds chirping. I’d checked off the first two stops and had only one more.
Logistically, the plan made so much sense. A grocery store was located just around the corner from the pharmacy. It was part of the chain of stores with the same brand name where I usually shop. Why should I drive further down the road to my familiar grocery store when one was a few yards away? Everything would be the same, and I may finish shopping quickly enough to have time to pick up lunch at a drive- through restaurant on the way home.
As I entered the grocery store, little did I know that I was walking into a maze of frustration and confusion. Come on! Who puts spices by dairy and the Easter clearance items next to the baking aisle? It didn’t help matters that I had a list of items to find. We’ve all been there. You find a new recipe to try with unfamiliar ingredients that send you on a scavenger hunt through the store. Normally, I maneuver through the store like a robot just picking up the usual suspects. Not today. I was not even sure they sold some of these items here. Let along would I recognize these exotic beauties?
At last, I had all of the items and more in my cart. So it’s time to proceed to the checkout line. Every lane was packed with restless shoppers except the twenty items or less lane. The clerk stood idly. The man in front of me was trying to get a discount for the eight loaves of bread he intended to purchase. The clerk was addressing the matter to no avail and called for the manager’s assistance. All the while, the lady behind me grumbled and mumbled like a volcano ready to erupt. I figured this was just the way things were going on this day after my experience at the pharmacy. Suddenly, the manager said, “We must get these lines moving now.” She grabbed my cart and directed me to follow it to the twenty items or less lane. Just like that everyone with twenty items or less submerged from the maze to this counter. First, I heard SOMEBODY CAN’T COUNT! Now I could have said blame it on new math, but I chose to grovel. That was just the beginning. I apologized, blamed it on the manager, and ate crow (baked, broiled, and stewed). I was a marked woman. It was if a dye pack from a stolen bank bag had just exploded all over me. So I put on my sunglasses and ran to the parking lot pushing a cart with plus twenty items. I just hope that my face is not posted at the twenty items or less lane where I usually do my grocery shopping.
Slice of Life Tuesday