Yesterday was…a day.
It was Friday, so hubby needed a ride home. His carpooling falls apart on Fridays, which actually works quite well for us. I save all my errands til Friday, then I take one child and the baby and we run like maniacs trying to get it all done before 5. Yeah, right.
Yesterday I decided to make it extra fun. I took all of the children with me, and let them buy Christmas presents for each other while I shopped for groceries.
You can smack me in the forehead now. Go ahead. I deserve it.
We must have looked like fools: shoplifting fools. I had odds and ends wrapped in coats and baby blankets and tucked away in 2 1/2 dozen different hiding places. No wait, it was just 8, but it’s the same thing: 2, and 6 – that’s a half dozen. That’s 2 and a 1/2 dozen.
Then I realized that The Boy had knocked over a gallon bottle of handsoap on the seat of cart next to where he was sitting. And it was opened. And it was running down into the cart, which was solidly packed like a cup of brown sugar.
And even though my purse was all the way at the bottom (how’s that for planning?) somehow the soap found a way through spaghetti sauce and paper plates and mini butterfingers (how did those get in there?) and into the one open pocket of my purse – the one with the checkbook.
Yeah. And also onto the baby’s only blanket, which was being used to hide gifts on the bottom of the cart.
Oh, by the way: don’t you love those low-flow faucets in the public restrooms? The ones that automatically shut off after 6 seconds, even if you’re still using them? Try rinsing a cup of soap out of a blanket that way. Let me know how it works out for you.
But we didn’t dwell on it. I rinsed the blanket as well as I could – which wasn’t very well – then punished WalMart by using handfuls of paper towels to blot the remaining soap out of the blanket as well as I could, and left the bathroom with a firm resolve to keep the blanket away from the baby’s eyes. I think I also resolved to forget the fact that there was an undetermined amount of softsoap in my purse. Now that I think about it, I realize that I still haven’t looked. I bet there’s some really clean stuff in the bottom of my purse.
We finally had to call it quits on the shopping even though several children loudly protested that they weren’t done yet, and we headed to the checkout. I found a promising line with just 2 or 3 carts in front of me and loaded my goods onto the conveyor, taking care to keep bundles of gifts separate and hidden. As she finished up the last of our 70-something items, she turned to me:
“Now I have to ask you a weird question.”
I assumed she wanted to know if the kids were all mine. Not a weird question at all, but maybe she felt awkward about asking. Or maybe she was going to inquire if I had any more merchandise hidden about my person.
“Are you buying cigarettes today?”
OK. That was weird. No, I wasn’t buying cigarettes today.
“Because this is the 10-items-and-less aisle unless you’re buying cigarettes.”
Oh. This is where I apologized profusely, both to the cashier – who was very nice about it because it’s her job to be nice to obtuse idiots – and to the people behind me, who did not look at all nice about it, probably because it wasn’t their job to be nice to obtuse idiots. Or because they had already dealt with their quota of obtuse idiots for the day.
I probably should have just bought a pack of cigarettes.