I am guilty of stealing a picture — from my sister in law, Polly’s Xanga site. But this is a very current picture of me and my two sisters. And this weblog is about a very special day. And I don’t have a picture that was taken today because I keep forgetting to take my camera and ask people to take our picture — but I digress.
My youngest sister, Alma, had a birthday on Saturday. It was a busy time for all of us, and so we decided that we would go out today. I had a gift certificate to “Where Pigs Fly” restaurant in Dover, and so we decided that we would all go there to celebrate. We got a good start, and got to Ollie’s Bargain Mart and perused the many good bargains there and found some books that suited our fancies, and then headed on to Where Pigs Fly for a wonderful lunch together. There was good conversation, laughter and a generally relaxed atmosphere.
And then we went to the Mall, where more bargains were procured at the semi-annual Clearance Sale at Yankee Candle, and also at the Boscov’s Department Store. We stopped briefly at Auntie Anne’s pretzels and got a drink and some pretzel sticks, and then we headed for the great Sam’s Club. Now Youngest Sister had been there earlier this week, and had taken a great deal of time to put a large amount of things to buy in her cart. When she got up to the checkout, she produced her visa card to pay, and was told that she could not use visa at Sam’s Club. It had to be Master Card or Discover or personal check. None of which she had. I have thought over this situation several times, and I promise you that I would have not just given up, but she was on a time schedule to get back to milk, and so she eventually walked away and left everything. The checkout girl was not helpful at all, and the whole situation was frustrating indeed. So on this day, she was going back to get all the things that she hadn’t been able to get on the previous visit. Middle Sister and I also had things to get, but Youngest Sister had warned us that it was going to take her a long time, but promised to hurry. So I kind of meandered about, and looked at things, got a few things and then, just as I was getting my last item, a 55 lb. bag of moisture control Miracle Grow Potting Soil, my cell phone rang, and behold, Middle Sister had completed her check out and was patiently waiting, and Youngest Sister was almost finished checking out. So I heaved the big bag across the top of my cart and headed for the check out. It stuck out in such a way that I had to be so careful not to assault other customers, but I finally found a relatively short checkout line, and got it onto the belt along with my other purchases.
About then, I saw Youngest Sister tromping across the eating area towards the counter where you order pizza or drinks or whatever. “Do you want any water?” she asked as she passed by my line.
“No, I’m fine,” I said, “but take my keys so you can go ahead and start loading.” I willed the fellow to hurry up so that I wouldn’t keep my sisters waiting. After all, Youngest Sister had cows to milk again this evening, and it was getting on towards three o’clock. About that time, my cell phone rang again and it was Certain Man, calling to see where I was, what was happening and was I about home yet and then he told me the chicken catching schedule for the next morning, and informed me of several other things that I absolutely couldn’t concentrate on. Around the cell phone, I instructed the young black pleasant faced check out guy to just put it on my card. He loaded the cart, handed me my sales receipt and membership card, and I headed for the door. The 55 lb. bag of Miracle Grow made steering the cart just a little challenging, but as I came down the exit aisle, I saw both of my sisters, waiting for me. They were ready to go, and started to push their carts towards the door. That’s when I noticed that Youngest sister was having even more trouble with her cart than I was with mine, plus she had purchased one of those lovely big buckets that are so popular this year that have a handle that is all in one with the bucket and wheels that make it easy to move it around. It is like a wheelbarrow of sorts, except it’s a bucket. So she was trying to drag this on behind with one hand while pushing her cart with the other, and both items had wills of their own and were going in all directions.
Ever the one to fix things, (will I ever learn???) I reached behind me and caught the front of her cart while pushing mine in front of me. She objected at first, but when her cart went off to the side again, she saw that there was an advantage in me pulling just a little from the front while she pushed. My cart was behaving pretty well, but we did have some difficulty getting through the doors while they checked all our purchases. Finally we were out into the hot sunshine and on our way to the van. What a parade we must have seemed, and the carts didn’t want to behave, and the bucket sometimes went sideways, and we needed to stop and correct our course numerous times, but we finally got to the car. Alma looked expectantly at me, then remembered that she had the keys, so she produced them and we began the job of loading. Certain Man had thoughtfully removed the back seat before we left home, and that was a good thing. Alma got herself up inside the van so she could arrange things in there.
Suddenly, across the parking lot I heard a commotion. “Miss, — Hey, Miss!” It was the young man who had checked me out. He came running across the parking lot carrying a purse. “Hey, Miss! Is this purse yours?” I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was mine. It was gaping open, just as I must have left it on that little stand thingy that is at the checkout stations, but it was all intact, and I was one relieved lady. I hadn’t missed it, and since Alma had the keys, I had missed the one thing that would have triggered looking for it. I was so grateful, and tried to thank him properly, but he was on his way back to the store and his station before I could hardly assimilate what a gift he had given me. Honestly, I have been in stores before where people left things and the checkout people act like trying to run after the customer to give them what was left behind was too much bother. They would just turn it into the customer service department and forget it. I am so glad that I had an energetic and willing person to expend the energy to come after me. It would have been so disconcerting to have to go back to Dover to get my purse.
And then we came on home, the three of us. All of us were tired to the bone. No kidding. Alma still had to chore, and I had some things to do, as did Sarah, but it was such a pleasant day, and we had such a good time. My sisters and I used to try to go out once a month — that lasted about three months. Maybe four. The older I get the more I realize how much I like my sisters. We honestly don’t get to see much of eachother. We go to different churches, and we are all busy with our families. But every now and then it happens and we get together and have a great time. Even if we do seem to get ourselves into dilemmas and difficulties, it is still so much fun.
You want to know something interesting? Probably neither of my sisters will read this post unless someone tells them, “Mary Ann was talking about you on her blog!” It isn’t that they aren’t interested, but Sarah’s computer just doesn’t cooperate very well with anything she wants to do, and Alma, bless her heart, finds her computer more of a nusiance than anything else. Which tells you how very different we really are in some things. But in others — down in our hearts where it really counts, we are soul friends.
And I am so glad.