Naturally, today of all days, I would wake up with the intense need to go one of the worst places one could go on Christmas Eve – the supermarket.
The quest? To retrieve milk with the fewest number of casualties possible.
Today was already starting to look like a day of decisions.
I bundled up little A as much as I could, you know four pairs of pants, three sweaters, a scarf, mittens, winter coat, and boots. I decided it was a bit excessive when he couldn’t physically walk in a straight line, so I tossed the scarf.
We proceeded to skate to the market because that’s how we travel here in Edmonton for the months of December and January.
The site we witnessed when we first arrived belonged to a horror movie. The produce section looked like a post apocalyptic food grab without the automatic weapons – that being said, I’m sure that scene is a reality south of the border. The floors were covered in brown icy sludge, and random bags of food ripped in result of rage. To complete the ambience – Christmas carols and tearful children serenaded the stressed shoppers.
Little A wobbled next to me, reaching for things that only a two year old boy could truly need – tampons and gluten free bread.
He wasn’t the only one PMSing, my sweet city of stereotypically kind Canadians seemed to be as well – and there wasn’t enough chocolate for everyone.
We pushed through the people fighting over celery, and moved to where others were packing every last packet of instant gravy. Shopping carts were weapons and baskets were modes of faster inter-aisle transportation. Who are these people?
We finally got to the general vicinity of Dairy, now all we needed to do was push through the tens of raging barbarians. I looked at little A, he knew what he needed to do.
The plan was simple, tug gently at the coat of the woman that was the head of the operation, then commence Operation Adorable bat eyelashes and start to giggle uncontrollably.
Success, milk in hand, we hurried to the self checkout line. The experience was traumatizing.
I needed comfort food and fast, we would go somewhere safe, away from all this holiday torment.
Wendy’s drive through it is.
From a distance we could see a plume of smoke coming from a truck and two men in a heated argument.
I couldn’t forsake the sanctity what was lunch time, the boy needed to eat. Despite my better judgement, off we went.
Pulling into the drive through, a thoroughly pissed off employee ask what we wanted.
“Do you guys have anything healthy,” I asked.
I could feel her cold, patronizing glare through the speaker.
“Never mind, spicy chicken wrap for me and chicken mozzarella supreme combo, oh with orange juice as the drink please.”
“God I hope they don’t spit in our food,” I kept chanting to myself. I could hear little A shouting “SPIT, SPIT!”
Popping french fries in both of our mouths we sped off, we knew the only safe place in the city was our home. We skated back home and peeled layer after layer off as we munched on our possibly tainted lunch.
But it got me thinking, we spend years teaching our children the importance of kindness and sharing. We encourage giving and that the holidays are meant to depict a scene of perfection only found in a snow globe. With all the stress in today’s world, with a global recession and international tension it’s become so difficult to just let go.
But I hope you do, I hope we all do.
Merry Christmas Everyone.
Sweet Dreams World.