Groceries – the bad news & the good news

We hadn’t been to the grocery store for quite some time.  We made quick trips for bread, milk & produce here & there, but we found ourselves precariously close to the end of our toilet paper and laundry detergent, so something had to be done.

I always keep a grocery list, & add to it as things come up that we need.  List in hand, I navigated the crowded grocery store, and completely filled my cart.  Apparently, we were out of everything.

The checkout lines were long.  I fidgeted, checked my email on my blackberry, and then fell to speculating how much damage this little spree would have on our bank account.

But then it occurred to me to reframe it in my mind.  What did I have to lose?  I wasn’t going anywhere, and whatever morose thoughts I came up with would have no bearing on the length of my wait or on my grocery bill.

I admired the stuff in my cart.

Then I imagined what it must be like to not be able to go to the grocery store & pick out whatever my family needed and wanted.  What a luxury!   There are people right here in this very city who could not have this experience.  Not only had I picked out fresh produce & other healthy foods, I also picked up an avocado, because it sounded good.  I also got a bag of Doritos.  I bought a more expensive hair conditioner this time.  And a bottle of Downy fabric softener.  And a bunch of other things that aren’t bare necessities, but “nice to haves.”

On the way home, I phoned my husband so that he would be prepared to help me lug all the loot into the house.

“The bad news is that we were out of so many things that I just spent a gazillion dollars at the grocery store,” I said.

“Oh well . . . ” he replied.

“The good news is that we’re so lucky we are able to fill a grocery cart with good food and things for the house.”

He was quiet.  Then he said, “Okay, see you when you get home!”

I don’t think he knows what to make of me some of the time.


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