pick up the pace

i think i might need to move in the next few years…

…not because of real estate prices.

hell, the rate i pay on this place has been the only thing that’s kept me here for years. no, i’m talking about the pace of small time life; which for a while i’ve also said is part of what keeps me here, but after yesterday i’m not so sure…

…although off days happen, so i might be over-reacting a bit.

i had to run to the store for that one fucking item i forgot on the previous trip; this is normally a hash mark in the small towns are good column – a fairly major grocery store near to the house (under five minutes) that usually for such a run you’re in and out in no time (again, under five minutes) and on your way home. realize you forgot syrup for waffles at 8am and you’re pouring it on by 8:15? yeah, try THAT in a suburban hell.

but yesterday? double that time.

started off on the way there – got stuck behind a farm impliment. while i’ll grant you this doesn’t happen NEARLY as often to me as some of my more urban friends might wager, it’ll still slow you down to a crawl…then i get to the store, grab what i need (three items) and make for the lines and choose “express”. an older lady offered to let me cut in front of her in the normal lane as she had a sizeable cart, but i said, “no thanks, ma’am…i’m good” and pointed at the older gentleman in front of me with only five or six items. she asked again and again i declined politely.

i chalked it up to the stereotype about older people’s memories…not knowing i SHOULD have chalked it up to “with age comes wisdom” ’cause the older guy in front of me was told his total and stood there, expressionless, for a good thirty seconds before digging in his front pocket for another eight count and then drawing out a checkbook. the pace that he wrote said check could best be described as the same pace a six year old would do it if he was being graded on penmanship, had a head injury, and was clutching the pen in his teeth…

…or maybe about a half notch slower.

and then after he handed over the check he stood there for another fifteen seconds before flatly saying, “oh, darn…i forgot i needed stamps. can you get me some stamps? i’ll just pay for those out of my pocketbook so i don’t have to write another check”. but, of course, they don’t keep stamps at the register any more so she had to go retrieve them from the customer service counter while he dug out exact change at half the pace he wrote the check.

i timed it on the register screen – to buy five items and a book of stamps took almost ten minutes.

the trip back was almost as agonizing (probably because of the pace of the check-out) due to getting stuck behind some “my car won’t go faster then twenty” kind of folk almost all the way home…

…but per usual, writing this bit has been a bit of therapy for me.

on the one side this is the exception, not the rule – and typically this kind of trip goes a lot faster.

on the other side, if these kind of errands are going to take suburb-level time i’d like suburb-level conveniences, like more food and entertainment choices.

guess we’ll see if this is a trend or was just a bad day…

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