The saint and I decided to stop by Costco this evening for a few items. We should’ve known how the trip was going to go down by the absence of carts at the entrance. Not a single cart was there to grab.
“There’s carts in the back, the very back,” a lady was telling an Asian family nearby who looked particularly befuddled. We were, too. “All the way at the back of the store!”
Armed with this information (the military verbs start already), the saint and I find a shopping cart in the wild and throw a Pokeball. After a few wobbles, it’s a catch. We begin our shopping trip.
“If I don’t hit anyone with this cart, it’ll be a miracle,” I remark as I attempt to maneuver around shoppers and kids, who are darting in and out like extras from Oliver Twist. Overall everyone’s pretty calm and polite, but clearly frightened. I begin to imagine we’re all on the Titanic together, for some reason.
“Oh look. They’ve limited packs of bottled water to two now,” the saint comments.
“No toliet paper…” I add, staring at the empty shelves in a bemused awe. “Not a single roll…”
We proceed to find the end of the line. It’s all the way to the back of the store and has curled around to the back, right side where I discover endless varieties of crackers. As we go in and out of aisles, snaking our way to the front, I notice many of the freezer sections are empty. Only stacked, empty cardboard display boxes fill the voids, like a half forgotten Tetris game.
“Just pretend it’s ten years ago and you’re waiting in line for the next Harry Potter book,” I quip to the saint, trying to coach him through the long line. There’s a lady in front of me with one leg on a wheeled, medical cart. I focus on not taking out her other leg while examining the cracker boxes. Ooh, a variety pack…
Somehow the line goes fairly quick, considering, and we’re gestured to a register by a worker. I nod and smile as the customer in front of us starts sharing some conspiracy theories while he unloads his bulk container of canned green beans. He and the cashier (a polite, customer service oriented cashier) and him get into a mostly one sided conversation. I think we’re all a little relieved when he goes.
A manager comes up then and asks our cashier if she can stay late. No can do, she has to pick up her kids. I witness the smoothest transition of cashiers I’ve ever witnessed.
“Don’t you even worry about it,” Cashier B says, stepping in without missing a beat.
“I got you,” she affirms again, signing into the cash register at warp speed with neon green, manicured nails. “You have a safe trip.”
“I love you,” Cashier A says in a sisterly, we-are-women, we-are-sisterhood, let’s-fist bump and keep on trucking, kind of way.
“I love you, too.”
I stand there in awe, but in a different kind of awe than when I beheld the empty toliet paper shelves.
I want to work here!
Cut to late night, the saint and I are eating subs we picked up after our shopping experience. The Labrador has her head on my arm, staring at my sandwich. When–SUDDENLY–she lets out a sneeze of all sneezes as such a Labrador has never sneezed before!
I stare at my “blessed” veggie sub, wondering if dogs can catch the coronavirus.
“That’s the cherry on top of today,” the saint reflects while laughing.
I poke at my bread. I take a bite, and then another.
I’m hungry after all. Shopping takes it out of you.
Stay safe everyone and remember to keep your humor. Let’s all get through this together, six feet away with air high fives all around. Cheers.