As usual, I am running late.
It's 5:45 in the evening and I still need to pick my kids up from daycare/pre-k. My adrenalin is running high.
The other shoppers in the grocery store dawdle about as if they have nothing else to do but slowly and methodically analyze each banana bunch. Get. Out. Of. My. Way. I rudely reach in front of an older woman and blindly grab a handful of bananas (a must-have in our home since it is the ONLY fruit my 4 1/2 year old will eat right now). I toss them in my cart and speed away before I she can comment on my uncouth behavior (I swear I hear a barely audible, disapproving cluck as I race over to the deli counter).
A pock-marked young man starts weighing my slices of American cheese (yellow, of course) and does so slice-by-painful-slice.
I am wishing I had just grabbed the packaged Kraft cheese. I wonder if I could slink away without him noticing. Always multitasking, I look around to see what else I can run and grab in the general area while deli-boy slowly lays out my cheese on the scale.
"Would you like to try a sample," he asks, interrupting my plan of attack.
"Um, no," I say, although I am starving and would love to cram a couple of slices of Genoa salami down my throat. I'm starving, sweaty, and stinky--not at all a sight to behold.
Truth be told, I am late because I just had to squeeze in some gym time between work, the grocery store, and kiddo pick-up. Instead of feeling refreshed, I am now completely stressed.
Finally, cheese in hand, I jet over to the freezer case, find the Gorton's fisherman in the form of sticks, zip to the coffee aisle, and pull down a bag of Starbucks French Roast (ground). Then, I head to my final stop--cat food.
Guess who I get stuck behind? Pokey banana lady. She turns and flashes me a dirty look. I try to pass her on the left and she ambles into path. I go right and she decides that's where she is heading. I sigh. I roll my eyes. I feel my blood boiling. Deep breath, I tell myself.
I get to the cat food and throw the kibble into my cart (I later realize I have purchased kitten food for my two mature cats). I dart up to the check out and take my place in what I think is the shortest line and wait.
And wait. And wait.
"Price check on aisle five."
My aisle. Figures. I hear someone pull up behind me. Would you believe it? Banana Lady--again. I swear she is stalking me.
I grab the latest issue of US Weekly and start reading about how painless Gisele Bundchen's birth was and how the super model is already back to her pre-pregnancy weight. Bitch. I close the magazine and put it back, trying to avoid contact with Banana Lady.
I check out, spending much more than I anticipated, and run to the car. I decide that I don't have enough time to return the cart in its nearby corral and park it on the passenger side of my car. I hop in and throw the car in reverse. A horrible clang and grinding sound stops me in my tracks. I turn to my right to see my cart (which I just hit) fly into the parking lot behind me and right into the path of (no, say it isn't so) Banana Lady!
I scoot down in my seat and try to hide. I have two choices: jump out and move my cart (and find myself face-to-face with Banana Lady, who has now collided her cart into my wayward cart); or drive forward, cutting across a few empty spaces to make an anonymous and cowardly retreat.
It's late; almost 6. I need to get the kids. I opt for the latter and speed away into the setting sun.
I am not proud. I know I need to slow down. I am trying. I did, however, make it to daycare on time.
Sorry Banana Lady.