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Fred's Views

The Shopping Trip

Yesterday my wife and I went shopping. (Actually, by the time I finished this piece it was a couple of weeks ago.) We live in a semi-rural area, so, going shopping not only requires the use of a car, but also requires a little bit of traveling. My wife wanted to go to the Centre Mall which is about a fifteen minute drive from home. At the mall, we visited a health store to see if they have any new Atkins products (which are somewhat difficult to find in Canada and, of course, ridiculously expensive). Then we decided to visit the other health store in the mall. On the way, my wife stopped at the watch repair to have a couple of links removed from her new watch band. (I had tried, but I couldn't get the bars to move with the equipment I had.) They told her it would be about five minutes. Then we carried on to the health store. On the way back, I suggested stopping at the computer store which stocked used accessories for the Nintendo 64 game system my son's girl friend has. We bought a controller to replace the one we had put out of commission during a heated session of MarioCart.

With that out of the way, we headed out to our next port of call in Burlington (about another 15 minute drive). On the way, we were talking when we came to the junction of, actually, three highways. Now, over the last few years this junction has been reconstructed a few times, so, since I don't travel that way too often, it is easy to get a little confused. Anyway, I started going the wrong way, realized my mistake and started to pull into the exit lane (after checking that I could still do so safely) and my wife shouts "What are you doing?" My knee-jerk reaction is to swing back in the lane I was in. Needless to say, we ended up on the wrong highway traveling about 10 kilometers before we reached the next interchange (the longest distance between interchanges for this portion of highway). So, we turn around and head back another ten kilometers.

We visit another health store. and then head for Costco. Just inside the door, my wife spies a garden figure she has had her eye on. So we place it on the bottom shelf of the cart. Now Costco has technology, business, appliances and tools along one side of the store; food along the other side of the store and candy (treats), clothing, books, videos and seasonal stuff down the middle. We finished both sides and started down the middle. My wife stops to check out the carbohydrate count on some snacks (terrible) and then we continue on to one of my favorite parts of the store (after the computer section and just slightly ahead of the food section), the books and videos. As we're checking out the merchandise, my wife asks me where the cart is. We look around, but don't see it. So now we're off on a search to find out who stole our cart. (There really wasn't anything in it that we couldn't easily replace, but that wasn't the point.) My wife is busy going through all the aisles while I start to backtrack our progress. Then I spy it. Sitting in the aisle beside the snack that she had been examining. She had, okay, we had, left it there. Took a while to find my wife, but we finally connected, made our purchases and went out to the car.

After loading all of our purchases in the van, my wife takes the cart to the cart corral. About as soon as she gets inside, she suddenly remembers that we forgot to pick up her watch. So, now it's back to the mall. Fortunately, it's only a couple of kilometers off the highway we'd be taking anyway.

We pull into the mall parking lot when my wife asks me if I remember loading the garden figure into the van. I don't. We stop. We check. No garden figure! We left it on the bottom shelf of the cart. It is still inconceivable to me that we both failed to see it. However, in our defence, the cart was made of a plastic egg-crate design which rather effectively blocked one's view of the bottom shelf. Anyway, we quickly retrieve her watch, and set off again for Burlington.

When you are traveling directly to Costco, you exit before the highway junction, so, fortunately, we didn't have to contend with that problem again. We pull into Costco and check the cart corrals. No garden figure. With slim hopes we go to the service counter. As we wait in line I look around the service counter area, no garden figure. Then, just as we are about to be served, I spy a garden figure box on the floor. Fortunately, some kind soul (or someone whose taste doesn't run to garden figures) had returned it to the service counter. We carefully stow our treasure and set off for home once more.

Fortunately for us, unfortunately for my story, we arrived home without further incident.

Copyright © 2003 by Fred Oldfield. All rights reserved.

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