I have resigned myself to the fact that there will be some crap that I just can’t get in the suburbs.
Actually, that is what I call it when I talk about that category of stuff with The Mr. “Crap I Can’t Get in the Suburbs.”
The list isn’t as long as I thought it might be – but the things on it are meaningful and dearly missed.
One thing I did not anticipate being on that list hit me square in the eyeballs before we had even closed on the Casa.
There I was, a refugee wedging my family into my generous parents’ house, awaiting our closing date with nothing to show of a roof of our actual own except a key to a storage shed behind an abandoned K-Mart where the movers had piled our life up on top of itself precariously, and driven off leaving me standing in a sea of green metal garage doors the week before.
I needed some “normal.”
Grocery shopping is as normal as it gets, right?
So off I went, Jr. in tow, list in hand, to stock up on all the family essentials.
Parked in the insanely large parking lot of the insanely large grocery store, ready to learn the layout of what would be our “home” store with my trusty co-pilot in the cart (container of “go-fish cackers” firmly in hand) to assist me.
I can’t remember what we were talking about, but in that time frame (7 months ago,) it was probably Old MacDonald (he had a farm I hear,) or if we were happy enough and knew it enough to clap our hands. (Not for long!)
It makes sense that I wouldn’t remember what we were saying because out of the corner of my eye I glimpsed a thing that made me gasp breath clutch the cart like I had been stung by a devil bee.
There, in white lettering on a brown background, right at the door, was a sign that started with the words “Store Hours.”
I stopped midway across the threshold and drug Jr. and the cart backwards and sideways to get RIGHT next to the spectacle.
There it was. As true as God.
“Open: ___________ (don’t remember/doesn’t matter/so not the point)”
I can’t be responsible for the volume of the exclamation, even if I did startle the elderly couple walking out the door so much that not-MY-granny-anyway had to steady herself on not-my-granddad’s cane.
The grocery store does NOT close.
I mean maybe on Christmas and Thanksgiving for a few hours or whatever. But not EVERY DAY!
It all hit me at once… what if we ran out of Diapers, or Milk, or precious baby medicine, or QUESO DIP, at 1:15 a.m.!? A wave of insecurity washed over me, like a fan dancer in a wind-tunnel – I just KNOW something is going to happen, and when it does there is NO WAY I can cover my behind.
Have we ever, EVER, gone, either one of us, to the grocery past like 9pm since Jr. was born? No, not that I can recall.
It is the IDEA of it.
It just CAN’T be good.