Wednesday, November 01, 2006

walmart...and the death of a sahm

I admit it, I shop at walmart. Merely out of necessity, since target is so far away. Of course, after today, I think walmart will get no more of my money.

It starts out like this... I need groceries. Like most people, I cook at home, therefore, I need the stuff to make meals. Big D is working this evening, so silly me, thought he could go with me today. Just because. Well, after he rushes off to work to some all important meeting, I feed Chilly some lunch, off we go to the almost local walmart (the one by our house won't be finished until later next year). So I have my 3 year old, and my shopping cart. Things are fine. We stopped by the Halloween clearance stuff, and I find a sweet deal on superhero costumes (4.95!) So I put a few in my cart( Halloween next year?) And I get ready to dig in and do the crazy grocery thing. We start. We finish. About 40 minutes. Typical. I have my trusty list, made off the menu at home. Everything is looking good. Until I look for a place to check out.

See walmart likes you to come to the store, but they don't like you to leave the store. Well at least that is the impression that I got. My cart is full, overflowing. I've got frozen broccoli, and ice cream. I find a "short" line to check out. With the invention of the self-checkout (which I have no problem with, just not real practical when you are grocery shopping for 3 weeks worth of food) there are less lanes open with actual checkers. I find one, although I am unconvinced that this girl was an actual checker, much less human. I don't know how anybody can move that slow. And I've bought groceries in New York. Even the 90 year old man who checked out my groceries last time could have spun circles around this person.

But that is my problem right? There were 3 available checkers. It is only Wednesday afternoon, November 1st, at 1:00pm. I know it isn't a real "rush" time, but there were quite a few people in the store. Mostly moms with small kids. Like mine or smaller. Because the bigger ones were at school....See where I am going with this.

Anyway, I should have changed lanes. I should have packed up my soggy ice cream and my e-coli chicken fryer and went to lane 21. That checker looked like she knew what she was doing. But I was boxed in. There were people behind, and people in front. It was an ally of hell. Screaming babies, tired 2 year olds and a rambunctious 3 year old who was trying to help everyone. I think there should be a separate line for moms with grumpy children, but I digress...

So instead of moving, I politely think, oh this isn't so bad. Maybe this woman is having a hard time. Maybe the scanner is broken. Maybe she has vericose veins in her crotch that hurt when she stands for more than 20 minutes...Oh wait, that is me. But I give her the benefit of the doubt. Until about 30 minutes into waiting. I'm tired, chilly is tired. So I start in on the mean grumpy face. So does Chilly. He wants me to buy him air fresheners and wiggly pens.

40 minutes into the wait and I finally have room on the conveyer belt to start loading up my drippy ice cream and my spoiled hamburger. There is a woman that comes around and tell the people behind me that there is another register with a real human two lanes over that is now open. What to do? Do I throw stuff back into my cart and switch lanes??? NO. I. Am. An. Idiot. I stay and wait.

The mom in front of me has 5 or more WIC tickets to be rung up. I swear this checker doesn't speak English. Maybe Martian or jupitarian or something similar. As slowly as she can, and I assume, without a pulse, she gets those rung up.

50 minutes into my wait time, I have almost everything squished onto the belt, when it is finally my turn. Wahoo! I made it! I am keeping a close tab on the time because I have to pick up Harry from school at 3:30. I've got 20 minutes. Surely it won't take her THAT long to ring up all my purchases.

Sometimes in life, we refuse to see what a bad situation we are in. I find it comforting in a way, that I can still judge a person innocent, when obviously they are sent from satan just to work at walmart.

So 60 minutes in, and I am huffing the bags back into my cart, as she lazily fills them up. She oops as she drops my apples that I picked out. She gives me a dirty looks when the ice cream starts to run down her hand.

70 minutes in and she almost has everything rung up. I'm dying. I've got to go. Can you hurry please?? But isn't it obvious that I am in a rush, since I keep saying "we've got to hurry to pick up your brother from school". Wouldn't that be a clue to a normal person? I get my credit card out, ready to slam it through the slot thing as the potatoes cross the scanner. She totals, I've got the card out, I mention she needs to hit the credit button. She hits it and then says she needs to see my id.

Now why is it that last month, the old dude didn't need to see id, and it was a grocery bill much larger than this, but this time, when I am in a hurry to save my 6 year old from certain humiliation, they have to check and make sure it is really me. So I sling out my id. Do normal people really check the signature? Well this girl did, and she double checked it on the back of my credit card, which plainly reads "see ID".

As this point, I am already late for school, and I still have to load the groceries into the back of the van, and race the 10 minutes back to the school. I am imagining tears from Harry as he will be convinced that I have forgotten him.

"have a nice day" the human imposter tells me as I grab my receipt (hoping to give her a paper cut) and start the jog to my van. In which Chily tells me he needs to pee. Something falls to it's doom from the cart, as we are running in the parking lot. Dryer sheets and capri suns scatter in the middle of the road. I throw them back in, and load the car, careful not to squish buns. Record time in loading the van, record time in escaping the parking lot. I tell chily to drink the rest of his water and then he can pee in the bottle, but for some reason, he doesn't like that suggestion. I wait to get out of the parking lot because EVERYBODY is driving on the road to go pick up their elementary school kid. I finally just pull out and cause the rest of the world to stop and let me in...

I'VE GOT TO PICK UP MY KID!!! I yell at the other drivers. Which I am sure they understand. I'm a frazzled mom on the edge, don't push me.

I pull into a parking space and grab soggy chilly out of the back seat. We run across the street and find Harry, just fine, waiting for me to pick him up. The only tears are from me and my enormous amount of frustration.

So it all worked out in the end. I raced home and put the liquid ice cream in the freezer along with the assorted meat. I am just hoping that we all don't get sick off it. The food is all packed away in it's various places, and I am promising you, Walmart will not get me to step a foot in that store ever again. For at least 3 weeks until I go shopping for food again.


APRIL said...

YIKES!! I don't think I'd be back after that one! Sorry, but I had to laugh and you telling Chilly to pee in his water bottle. There's another plus for having boys!! :)

Stephanie said...

I have had that same cashier at the C Wal-Mart!!!! She sat and looked at everything I bought and asked me what I was going to make with it. I finally told her that I didn't have time to chit-chat and there were a lot of people in line behind me that were waiting. She huffed and didn't say another word to me.

It was lovely.

Stacy said...

Make sure to let a manager know what happened. Her name should be on the receipt...

That SUCKS! Sorry you had such a suckly day!

scraphappymama said...

Okay, I could feel your pain with every word I read. I'm with you . . Wal-Mart sucks. Too bad their prices are better, so I find myself repeatedly sucked into their crazy world!!!