Tuesday, July 25, 2017
You would have done the same thing if you saw an elderly woman with a walker trying to flag people down. It was about 7:30 at night on a quiet road near my home. I did the only thing a person would do, I made a U-turn to see if I could help. She said. "I just want to go to 7-11, would you take me there?" Only Caligula would have declined so I loaded her walker in the back helped her into the front seat all the while wondering what I was doing....and what she was doing. She must need milk or something is all that was going through my head.
I start...."7-11 is pretty far, what do you need there?" I'm thinking, It's July, it's the desert, it's so hot...this is crazy.
She was a very nice looking older woman, stylish jeans, knit pink top, adorable straw hat with a scarf to match. So I was quite surprised by what came next. She began with an assessment of her situation which was 2 artificial legs and 2 fingers on one of her hands. Also a husband she hates with all her heart because she suddenly showed evidence of a previous longshoremen career. The number of swear words she packed into one sentence describing him was impressive. And not just the toe stub ones....the full on rap music ones.
It might have been the most incongruous moment of my life,
I also realized when she started speaking happy hour had long begun and I was probably on a beer run. And then I thought....my family is never going to believe this.
When we arrived at 7-11 I told her I would go in to get whatever she needed. She seemed relieved and handed me money with instructions to buy the yellow topped Chardonnay.
Yellow topped Chardonnay? Does 7-11 sell wine? I rarely go beyond an occasional Mountain dew and kit kat bar, so I went to the coolers to look for the wine. Sure enough there was wine! I chose 2 bottles of yellow topped Chardonnay and it was within the budget my new friend had provided. I quickly looked around to see how many people were there I knew because I was all ready to tell them "the funniest story!" I knew I was either in a Fellini movie or a Stephen King novel...time would tell.
I quickly went to the checkout line hoping to put an end to this escapade. But not quite yet.... the woman at the front of the line was also buying 2 bottles of Yellowtail Chardonnay. (Seriously? what are the odds?) She was having a disagreement with the checkout guy over the price of Yellowtail Chardonnay. She insisted it was 2 for $8, she was so insistent he had to make a call to someone to check. Even with a line that was now twisting around the store, she was not backing down and insisted it was 2 for $8. Not only am I buying Chardonnay at 7-11 but it is on sale, 2 for $8. She turns around sees I am buying the same thing and proudly tells me not to worry she is going to get this wine for us at the reduced price. All I can manage is, "Thank you so much" all the while hoping no one I know walks in because if there was ever a time for doing good deeds in private it was this one.
After finally getting to the front of the line, surviving the cold stare of the check out guy who has to sell more mismarked wine 2 for $8 I proudly get in the car with my purchase. Finding a deal seems to please me no matter what the circumstances so I think she will be delighted as well. I imagine her saying, "you wonderful woman! Thank you for providing me and my no good husband with enough wine to last us all week!"
Uh no....she is furious. That adorable straw hat does nothing to soften her anger at the 2 bottles of wine I have purchased.
"What am I going to do with that?" she practically screams at me.
"Wait, it's Yellow topped Chardonnay, isn't that what you wanted?"
"I wanted the little bottles I can just guzzle, that's too big! What can I do with that?" My vision of a couple of wine glasses, this delicious product, and some cheese must not have been her vision. She was highly incensed and I realized it was a Stephen King novel. I'm thinking if I don't make any sudden moves everything will be ok.
So I offer, "No problem! I will take it right back in and find the little bottles you can guzzle"
She calmed down and off I went wondering when this was going to be over.
I found 2 little bottles at $1.99 and convinced the beleaguered check out guy to swap it out and back to the car I went.
Happiness....I had completed the mission....now, where does she live? I couldn't remember where I picked her up and I am not sure she knows where she is either. But the Scarlet O'Hara comes out in me and I calmly ask her where she would like to go now.....oh please know where you want to go.
"Take me to the bathrooms at the park." Not exactly what I anticipated but ok there is a destination in that sentence, so good....
I start driving and she asks, "Where are you going?"
"To the park."
"This is the wrong park."
"OK, which park?"
"The one on Gowan."
To myself I think there's a park on Gowan? I had no idea...Where is the park on Gowan?
Then she says, "It's ok, you can drop me off anywhere" Well, I know where that is, so I pull over and she impatiently looks at me and says..."Can't you take me to the park?" I ask her, "A park on Gowan? How about if we just drive over to Gowan and look until we find the park?" That appealed to her so after driving quite a while we finally find the park. Yes! I drop her at the bathrooms, but not close enough the first time so on my second effort I get her walker out of the back of the car, situate her things and bid her goodbye...
Lucy Ricardo would have been so proud....