Yesterday, I needed three things at the store. Dog food, creamer, and a gallon of milk. Simple trip, paying in cash, in and out in five minutes. No big deal. I picked up my items and even had a second to spare looking at the Valentine's stuff and dreaming about our first Valentine's as husband and wife!
I have really pushed myself this week and my hamstrings were screaming at me from the extra work load. It is unseasonably warm and I was wearing smooth bottom flip flops on a slick concrete floor. The self-check out line at our grocery store is never open but for some reason it was open with no line yesterday. So I slip and slide my way into the self check out line and scan my three items. As I reach to put the gallon of milk in the bag, it slips. I watch it fall to the floor in slow motion and which point it explodes! It soaks the woman in the line behind me, it shatters like it was made of glass, and I turn 18 shades of red. All of the customers were wonderful and apologetic and shared their own stories of dropping things in the line while the employees stand there and look at me!
I felt like a 5 year old that just got her hand stuck in the cookie jar. "Ummm, excuse me? I dropped my milk and need some help." More staring. "Ummm, excuse me? It's running and I soaked some poor lady's pants in milk." Finally someone comes around her station and puts two paper towels on the floor to stop it from spreading. Two paper towels. On a gallon of milk. Seriously?
Someone finally shows up with a handful of those little granuals that are supposed to absorb liquid spills. She looks at me, exasperated, and states that she needs more. I wanted to give her a stupid sign. Of course you need more! I dropped my milk and your genius buddy dropped two paper towels on it in an effort to stop the flood! I stood and watched helplessly, struggling not to cry. I asked what I should do because I needed my milk. The lady with granuals just looked at me. "I really need some milk. Do I need to go get some more or is someone bringing me some?" She said, "You can't have this milk." I think she just earned another sign. After much debate, we finally decide that I will go get the milk. From the back of the store. With my sore legs. And slippery flip flops. She tells me that I needed to hurry because the system would cancel my purchase in a few minutes and I wouldn't be able to continue checking out. I slip and slide as fast as I can and struggle to make it to the dairy case quickly without knocking old ladies and small children out of the way. I choke back tears on my way back to the front of the store where I find a hoard of people attempting to sweep up the milk. Not mop. Sweep. Brilliant.
I apologize for the mess one more time and someone says, "Well, we'll just have to charge you an extra 50 cents." I lost it. Big tears roll down my face. I don't have another fifty cents! I can hardly afford to pay for what I've already picked up! The lady laughs (way harder than she should have) and told me not to cry over spilt milk. I just cried harder. Then the system canceled my order and we had to call a manager to un-lock the system. I cried some more. Once it was all cleared out, the manager left and got involved in another customer. While straddling the lake of milk mush on the floor, I attempted to re-scan my items. The computer kept saying that my items had already been purchased by another customer. And they had been - by me. I just didn't pay for them... So we had to call the manager back over to fix the computer hang up. By that point, there were new people in line who couldn't figure out why I was standing in milk mush with wet pants and shoes and tears running down my face. Then, as if I weren't sick of this whole scenario, the employee gets upset that I only want to purchase three items. "That's it? You don't need anything else? Are you sure?" Nope. Three things. This was supposed to be a quick trip. When it was all rung up, the bill slot wouldn't accept my nice crisp bills. I struggled with it and asked for help, but only got dirty looks from the girl still attempting to sweep up the mess.
All told, my 5 minute trip to the store took 45 minutes. Afterwards, I laughed hard. In the moment, all I could do was cry over spilt milk...