Many of my friends know that I'm not a fan of Wal-Mart. In fact, when we lived in California I had so many bad episodes at Wal-Mart that Scott told me I wasn't allowed to shop there. He feared for my safety. There was one time when this man was shouting obscenities at another customer because she accidentally bumped her cart in to his. He continued to shout at her, and she was in tears. I politely asked him to stop. Well, his obscenities were then directed at me and were so loud, the Wal-Mart security guard escorted the man out of the store. And another time this woman on a ride-on shopping cart was busily eating a bag of family-sized Fritos when she accidentally ran me over as I reached for a deodorant from the bottom shelf. Then when she kindly apologized, Frito spewed from her mouth and actually landed on my arm.
It was then that I vowed to shop at Target. I considered the extra money I spent as insurance to my mental stability.
However, when we moved to South Carolina almost five years ago, we quickly noticed that the Walmarts here were very different from the Walmarts in California. They are clean. They are well-stocked. They are not heavily crowded, and the staff are normally friendly.
Well, take that Wal-mart background and consider this adventure:
We were out of many items on Saturday morning. Scott told me that we needed to go grocery shopping, and since he literally hasn't done much grocery shopping since we've been married, he wanted me to come with him. When he suggested I ride on one of the electric shopping carts, I was absolutely mortified. Now I realize that there are many people who rely on these carts to get their shopping done, and I'm thankful the stores provide them. But the idea of sitting in one with everybody watching was a little upsetting. I absolutely refused. Scott didn't understand why, but when I reminded him that we were a family with a five year old daughter, a double stroller carrying twins, a dad, AND A BROKEN-LEGGED MOM IN A RIDE ON SHOPPING CART, he quickly agreed that our family would quickly turn in to the freak show parade upon entrance to Wal-Mart.
So we compromised.
I told him I would ride the electric shopping cart, IF he would drive us all the way to Newberry county so we could do our shopping in that Wal-Mart where nobody would know us.
What can I say? He loves me, and he agreed. Isn't that fabulous?
So off we go on the interstate to Newberry County. Now just think of the logistics of actually getting every out of the car and in to the store! Scott pulled up in front, where I hobbled out. I went inside to figure out if there was a check-out system or whatever was required for me to ride in one of these carts. Then Scott unloaded all three kids with the double stroller and wheeled them in.
And then the freak show parade began.
About the third time somebody said "hahahah! DOUBLE TROUBLE!" to Scott, I thought he was going to explode. I've learned to appreciate the silly comments from strangers, but Scott still gets annoyed, and I'm afraid one day he will spout back, "They aren't any trouble at all, thank you very much!"
This Wal-Mart was far busier than any Wal-Mart we normally frequent, and the crowded aisles made it nearly impossible to make it down the shopping list.
Finally we were almost all the way finished and this big red light started blinking on my motorized shopping cart. Then the beeping started. You know what "beeping" I'm talking about! The "she's going in revers, move the heck out of the way!" beeping. Apparently the battery was going dead, and so the beeping continued until a manager could turn it off. But we didn't know this.
So survey the scene with me. I was in the main aisle of Wal-mart with a beeping, battery-dead motorized shopping cart in a strange town with twins nearing fussy time, and a daughter who appropriately added to the chaos by stating, "I really need to go to the bathroom.... LIKE RIGHT NOW" as everybody watched with sly grins on their faces. Scott and I looked at each other in horror, not knowing what tragedy to conquer first, but knowing that the only one capable of handling ANY of the empended doom was Scott. I was stuck with this awful purple cast on my leg that made me incapable of doing anything worthy of saving the day. So instead, I just began to cry. In Wal-Mart.
Now I'm not saying I know what hell is like, but it can't be too different from what I experienced at Wal-Mart last Saturday. Just sayin'
Scott finally found a manager who came with a new ride on motorized cart. I hobbled over to the new one while Scott unloaded and re-loaded the groceries to the new cart. My foot, which normally remains elevated all day had been down, and was throbbing. And I was so upset by the entirety of it all. Poor, poor Scott.
By the time we got back to our home I was so relieved. I vowed never, EVER to go to a grocery store in a cast again. Our Wal-Mart freak-show parade has made its last appearance.