You know how when you're in a hurry, the world stops revolving, spinning slowly down to die? Oh, wait! That's a Bread song. Anyhoo...when you're in a hurry, everyone else seems to be in slow motion.
On Wednesday, when I was meeting my favorite gambling aunt for lunch, I left home early enough to stop by the dead mouse smelling post office to pick up a package. We were supposed to meet at noon. It takes me about 40 minutes to get there. I meant to leave home at 10:45, to allow a plenty big cushion, in case I ran into traffic. NOT LITERALLY, of course! However, it was right at 11:00 when I left pulled out of the driveway.
I had barely passed EmBee when I came to my senses. The dead mouse smelling post office is closed from 11:00 to noon or noon-thirty for lunch! So much for that idea. I'd have to stop on the way home. Instead, I decided to drop by The Devil's Playground for a couple of things. It would be the third time I'd had dealings with The Devil this week. One of these days I'm going to get it together.
Anyhoo...I figured that would be cutting it close. But I only had a couple of things to grab. I snagged a great parking space right next to the handicapped. I figured I could be in and out in 10 minutes. Do you hear the universe laughing until it pukes? First of all, I couldn't get in the entrance door because one of the workers was futzing around just inside with a cart. So I had to go in the exit door. The Pony and Bel Kaufman would have been tearing their hair out if they knew.
It took me four tries to find an acceptable cart. One was jammed and wouldn't separate from a pile of peers. One had a broken blue flap thing, so my stuff would fall out of the child seat section. One had a retread-looking tire that was peeling apart.
Once I had my wheels, I took off at a good clip. Almost. I had to wait on an old man twice as slow as me. He was being a walk-blocker. It wasn't all his fault. He couldn't get through the exit beepers because three not-slim women were congregating on one side talking. I tried to avoid the hogjam by going on the other side, but a worker was talking to another worker who was talking to a worker handing out balloons to little kids. I really needed the OU Sooners' offensive line to clear me a path. They, however, were probably lolling around waiting for other people to take their finals for them. So I had to sweave like Farmer H to make my way into the Playground proper.
Well. Once there, I grabbed my green onions and hearts of romaine. Then I figured I might as well pick up some more plastic containers, since I try to ration my buying of them because they take up all the room in the cart. AND the day before, I had scored some BIG boxes of Chex for only $3.00. However, that display was at the back of the store. I thought I could swing it. I was feeling especially spry. I loaded up my cart with nine mid-size containers (three 3-packs), and fourteen big containers (seven 2-packs). I give a lot of Chex mix gifts.
I raced to the Chex display like a contestant on Supermarket Sweep. But without the turkeys and diapers. On the way back to the front, I figured I might as well pick up some more nuts. And the Bugles were on that same aisle. But a lady stopped me and said, "Where did you get your big cereal?"
"At the back! By the milk. Special display. Three dollars."
"THREE DOLLARS? That's how much THIS costs!" She waved a box of Corn Chex that wasn't much bigger than the individual 8-pack breakfast packages. At least people are thinking I'm SOMEBODY again, asking me stuff like I'm a store employee!
I got to the front, where I discovered that the first open register was way up at #4. There was a lady with kids trying to pay, and one with a laden cart behind her. I moved to 5, where there was only one lady, already piling it on the conveyor. There I was, with my 23 containers and six Chex and two cashews and two mixed nut jugs and onions and lettuce. Not much, really. But a guy and lady pulled in behind me, and he said, "Oh, crap!" Like I was stocking a preschool larder for a month. And using a voucher.
The lady ahead of me had her stuff out, and was moving forward. I looked around for the rubber divider. They hide them for some reason. The Devil's Handmaidens don't want them to leave their side. You'd think those things are defense weapons. Anyhoo, this particular Handmaiden sniffed with derision, and shoved that order-stopper back along the metal track at me. I really did not care for her attitude. But I put it behind the last thing from the previous order, which was a long tube of hamburger.
I put my like items on together. I crammed them in. But the Handmaiden was slow moving that conveyor. In fact, there was a gap of about three feet between the register and the last item of the other lady. STILL the Handmaiden would not move it forward so I could fit my Chex boxes on there. She told the lady, "That will be..."
"Wait. That's not all. You don't have my hamburger."
Heh, heh! That's what Handmaiden gets for messing with Mrs. Hillbilly Mom! She got all flustered. "Oh. I didn't know that was yours. I forgot it." THEN she had to add it on. THEN the lady's chip card wouldn't work. She tried it three times, with the Handmaiden finally taking it and doing it from her side. That was right after she announced, "That will be SEVENTEEN EIGHTY FIVE."
The lady said, "Say what?"
Heh, heh. The Handmaiden had just rung up the hamburger by itself. It was a real exercise in fustercluckery. All because the Handmaiden had that attitude about me looking like I was in a hurry (ain't gonna lie!) and wanting that rubber divider.
They finally got it straightened out. But I did not make my 10-minute shopping trip. It took 20 minutes. I pulled onto the restaurant parking lot with my rattling door and taped-up window right at noon.
And proceeded to wait unto noon-ten for Auntie, who said she'd slept in.