We were on our way home today from an appointment at the new Nappi Wellness Center at Upstate when it dawned on me that I had a list of “should gets” that hadn’t been attended to.
“Let’s stop at Costco. It’s on the way.” Perfect logic.
Actually, logic is a hard thing to come by right about now. It’s the beginning of the insane season of planning and cooking and gifting that falls on the shoulders, back and other body parts of the women in the family. For me it starts with buying enough candy to distribute to the hordes of Halloweeners that invade our street on the 31st. I try to spread the cost out over several shopping trips, but it all works out to be the same amount, no matter whether I purchase sugar in small amounts or large.
Quickly following Halloween is the mad dash to be prepared for Christmas giving. There is a bit of a uniqueness to my preparation because my sister drives three and a half hours from her house to drop off presents and pick up presents to bring back with her. That visit will come well before Santa Claus. The cost of postage probably equals the cost of gas but then there is the positive of having a visit with your sister. So it all evens out, just like buying Halloween candy.
There are three birthdays that need attention during this insane season. One for that same sister who drives here to receive and drop off gifts and the other is my daughter’s birthday. I like to make each special. Cards, gifts, maybe a cake, etc. I said three birthdays. The third is my brother-in-law for whom no gift has ever been or will ever be right. Talk about stress.
Thanksgiving is a wonderful eddy during this madness of a season. My daughter and her spouse prepare a delectable meal starring a succulently-smoked turkey with inventive sides that could stand alone. All I have to do is show up with some pies. Family and good food – love it.
Today I had to shop for a few items in preparation for Christmas baking, notably chocolate chips, dried cranberries and pecans. That was the list that pointed me to Costco. Of course, I knew that I would buy more than these three items. I am a realist.
Walking through the aisles of “buy me,” I turned down the toffee-coated cashews, innumerable protein bars that promised better health and some sweet -looking fresh flowers but was snagged big time by those breakfast cookies, a tub of detergent that Consumer Reports said was primo (equal to Tide), 12 cans of evaporated milk at a ridiculously low per can price and a gigantic box of K cups. I was now up to seven items instead of the original three.
Did I mention that I wasn’t alone? The spouse accompanied me and found some must-haves of his own that included his favorite, a Costco rotisserie chicken, which for Jerry is akin to Nirvana. He added a jar of chocolate covered raisins, frozen cooked chicken wings, beer from Meier’s creek and a bag of potato chips that was as tall as a three-year-old. The tally was now 12 items. I have a small car.
As it always happens, we ran into someone we knew, a friend from many years ago. We blocked the aisle with greetings and social sharing before evil looks from those we were delaying urged us on. I don’t know what happens to my mind in such situations. I know full well that I shouldn’t encumber the aisles with social interplay. How often am I the one staring daggers at the blockers? For some reason my mind goes on a holiday at Costco.
Needless to say, the tab was a lot larger than my original three items would have cost. There should be some kind of sign over Costco’s door similar to “Abandon Hope All Ye who Enter Here”. I’ve always wanted to use that quote to assure myself that my college British literature (the quote is from an Italian: Dante) course was useful. I’m not sure it fits but it’s close enough.
I was finally sitting down at home, after putting all of our booty away, when my spouse pointed out that we had been charged twice for the K cups. I called Costco and they advised me how to proceed. That would mean another trip back, searching for a parking space, navigating through the crowds and resisting the come-hither marketing stuff in piles that say, “Take me home.”
I’ll go tomorrow. I’ve used up whatever energy I had when I left the house.
I now have to use all of the stuff that I bought today. Yikes. I used to enjoy shopping. How many more days until Christmas?