Ok, I’ll be honest. I’m kind of embarrassed to tell this story. I’m sure some day I will look back at this post and laugh, but today is not that day. Please only laugh and point at me behind my back and not to my face.
We decided to have Thanksgiving at my house this year for Rich’s side of the family. I thought it would be fun. I must have been crazy or drunk at the time…or both. Don’t get me wrong, we did have a lot of fun on the day of the dinner, but I sort of kind of underestimated how much work it would take to prepare the dinner and the house for company. I have very limited time during the week as it is, when you add on trying to clean an entire house, cooking, kid wrangling, etc….it becomes quite exhausting.
To start the planning for the party, I created a list of things we needed. The things that were on the list included 12 wine glasses, various food items, decorations, etc. Where can you get all of this stuff under one roof, hmmmmm? If you guessed the evil “W” word, you were correct. I planned a trip to Wal-Mart, but because I hate the riff-raff that congregate in the Wilkes-Barre Wal-Mart, I decided to trek up to the Tunkhannock Wal-Mart. They are both about the same distance away from my house (20 miles/30 minutes). I left in the early evening on a night I had off from work. The sky was just starting to dim because the sun is now setting earlier with the change in seasons.
My strategy is when shopping usually to park as far away from the store as possible, so no one will hit my car. When I arrived at the Wal-Mart, the store was pretty empty, so I got a semi-close spot to the store. I don’t think that the Tunkhannock Wal-Mart gets nearly the same amount of people as the Wilkes-Barre store since it is a more rural section of NEPA. I parked the car, grabbed a cart, and started checking off items from my list.
By the time I got to the register, my cart was full. I paid for the order (which was….well over a hundred dollars) and proceeded to push the cart out into the parking lot. If you are a regular blog reader, you’ll already know that my car is the size of golf cart, so fitting all of these bags in my car was going to take some effort. I popped the trunk and started to put in what I could fit, which wasn’t much because I still had a box in there from BlogCon. I left the trunk open and started to place some bags on the passenger side and in the back seat. Within no time, and some elbow grease I had everything carefully loaded into the car. My car was packed to the gills. I stupidly decided to place my purse on my front seat while I closed the trunk and pushed the cart back to the corral which was next to my car.
I’m still trying to figure out how or why this happened, but as soon as I closed the trunk, my car auto locked. Oh yeah, and by the way, my car keys and phone were sitting in my front purse pocket on the front seat of my car. I tried to open the driver and passenger side doors about 3 times a piece just to be sure I wasn’t imagining this. I wasn’t. Oh….fuck….
There I was. Locked out of my car, at Wal-Mart of all places. My own personal hell. This is a nightmare coming true.
I sighed deeply and began the defeated walk back to the store. There was nothing else to do but venture over to the Courtesy Desk. Of course, with my luck, there was a line 4 people deep waiting to return stuff. COME ON PEOPLE! THIS IS AN EMERGENCY. When I finally got to the desk, I explained the situation to the clerk on duty. She must have thought I was deranged, but agreed to let me use the store phone to call my husband. At this point, you’d think the story would be over. Oh, she called her husband, he came to unlock the car, story over. Think again. Wal-Mart in Tunkhannock cannot call Sweet Valley or Wilkes-Barre cell phone numbers because they are considered long distance thanks to….BIG RED TELEPHONE COMPANY. I had to use the clerk’s cell phone (a Tracphone, which she wasn’t sure if there were enough minutes or battery life left on). I accepted the cell phone and attempted to call my husband. The phone rang 4 times and went to voicemail. GREAT. He never answers if he doesn’t recognize the number. I left a voicemail and hoped to god he checked it ASAP. In the meantime, I went back outside to check the doors and trunk another time.
After an eternity later (read: probably only five minutes), he called back thinking the clerk’s cell phone was the Wal-Mart store number. He said he would leave immediately to come and unlock my keys. Thankfully, there was a spare key fob when I got the car. However, that would be at least 30 minutes until he arrived. Now what?
In the first 10 minutes, I alternated walking inside and sitting outside waiting for him. In my mind I knew he wouldn’t be there that quickly, but just in case he figured out how to teleport himself to the store, I wanted to be ready. After my dreams of teleportation ended, I decided that I should go and walk around the store inside and stay warm. There had to be something to occupy my brain for the next 20 or so minutes.
Let me just tell you how awkward it is to walk around the store with no phone, no purse, no money and no way to get home. I would imagine how it would feel to be broke and homeless. I started out in the frozen food section and eventually made my way over to the soups. I looked at all of the products thoroughly and then realized I was starving. I was wearing no watch, but figured it must be at least 5:30 or 6pm by this point. We were planning to go out and eat dinner after I got back, those plans were blown out of the water. Then I started reading labels. Holy god. Frozen/prepared food has a lot of fat and calories in it. Of course, that got boring after a while.
After that, I decided to look at CDs. Yes, they still actually make those antiquated things, believe it or not. There were some really good CDs going for 5 dollars. Queen’s Greatest Hits? Yes, please. I would have totally bought that if I had my wallet. Then some other CDs that made me shake my head. Justin Bieber? I think not. I walked over to the mobile/computer area and the first thing that I noticed was that the Tunkhannock Wal-Mart does not have a tablet section as the one in Wilkes-Barre does. Maybe only stores within certain revenue brackets can sell higher end stuff? Oh, and the cell phone cases. Let me just tell you about the cell phone cases. There was 1 shelf of normal cell phone covers, but a whole display of camo covers. We’re not in Kansas any more, Honey Boo Boo.
Next, I ventured over to the toys, and looked at those for a good 5 or 10 minutes. Can you believe they brought back Furbys? Can you further believe that you can download an app to control said Furbys? I couldn’t on both accounts. Also, what the hell is a Fijit? Best I can tell it is a higher tech version of a Furby. That thing is creepy. The way it talks reminds me of those two blobby things from the Herculoids. It kind of looks like them too.
Don’t ask me how I remembered that.
I was just starting to check out the Christmas CDs when I was paged to the front of the store. I have never ever been paged in a store before in my life. How embarrassing! I met my husband and kids at the front of the store just in time to save my sanity. It really depressed me how many untalented musicians have holiday albums. I was about to walk over to the health and beauty section and rip open a package of razor blades to slit my wrists.
I explained to my husband what happened, but by that time I was tired. And annoyed. And hungry. And grouchy. And my back hurt from my choice of footwear. I just wanted to go the hell home. So I did. By the time I got home and we got dinner started it was 8pm.
Some safety features on cars are just a little TOO safe for my liking. I learned a valuable lesson that day and that is, always carry a wire hanger on your person. You never know when you’ll need to break in to your own car.