Earlier today I started to write a post about Tuesday. My first thought was that it was going to be Torture Tuesday…..Since yesterday was Christmas Tree Monday, we basically managed to drag everything out, spread it out all over the house and leave it. We had trouble with the lights. All of them. Everything was a tangled mess. The beads, the ribbons, the lights, the tinsel. You name it. It was a MESS. It actually looked like someone had vomited Christmas all over the house. YUCK. I actually said an extra prayer for safety because if the house were to burn, I wasn’t sure we could find our way out.
But then, the perpetual optimist in me, reminded me not to start the day off with such a negative attitude. Negative Nellys tend to suck the life out of people and I certainly don’t want to be one of those people. So, I went with a Terrifical Tuesday. Sure, the house was in absolute chaos. But I didn’t mind it. The kids were having fun. They had smiles on their little faces, so it must be a good day, right? Another day of decorating would only give me a good excuse for another cup of homemade hot chocolate.
All in all, I decided to scratch the whole dadgum post. I couldn’t fake it and I didn’t want to spread my pessimism, so I simply kept my mouth shut and my keyboard idle. I walked away from the computer. I decided I would come back when I could get my ADHD in control enough to make a firm decision about what to write.
And let me tell you, here I am!
I ended up making a run to the closest Hell-Mart, I mean Wal-Mart…..about 25 miles down the road from our teeny town. Yes, I hate the place. My hubby and I refer to it as the arm pit of East Texas. But when you live in the middle of nowhere, you realize beggars can’t be choosers. So, Hell-Mart has to suffice.
I needed to get some groceries to cook for tomorrow’s big Thanksgiving dinner at church, as well as some other things. I planned to leave the kids at home for the afternoon. Cameron is almost 16 now and I knew he could hold down the fort. So off I went. It was time for some peace and quiet. Kid-free time. This might just be Terrifical Tuesday after all! Yay!
Of course, I live a life of calamity and chaos. Many have said I was jinxed. Because I can do almost NOTHING without catastrophe. It follows me around like a puppy dog. I should have known today would be no different. I just THOUGHT I was gonna get some alone time all to myself. But my old pal, calamity was there with me all along.
It started off innocent enough. I was browsing the Christmas decorations. Pricing wrapping paper. Looking for a Christmas gift or two. That’s when the call came. The boys called to tell me the town I was in was now under a tornado watch. I paused for a minute and did actually consider stopping right there and heading home. But come on, how many times do we have a tornado watch and nothing ever happens? A lot. I decided to take my chances. I kept shopping.
I perused the yarn and crafts. The electronics. The pajamas. I took my time getting over to the grocery section. In fact, I was almost finished. Just another item or two and I would be ready to check out. That’s when it happened.
“Wal-mart customers and associates. We are now in a Code Black. Please be aware the weather is conducive to tornados and we are now under a tornado warning. Be prepared to seek shelter. Code Black.”
Shelter? Really? I’m in a Super Wal-Mart. Isn’t that shelter?
I decided to finish up my list quickly. There was just one thing I forgot in the back of the store. As I threw that can of cinnamon rolls into the buggy, I notice the aisles are empty. I guess that announcement (actually there had been three of them by this time), that Code Black, had frightened our local Wal-Mart shopppers. I thought it might be time to get serious. As I rounded the corner, I was met by an associate.
She informed me that there had been 3 tornadoes touch down in our area and we needed to take cover.
She sent me to the front of the store and to get somewhere ‘with walls’.
It seemed simple enough. I sat down in the McDonalds located at the front of the store and began making calls to check on my kids at home. Of course, no one answered. Not my mom. Not the hubby. Not the kids.
For just a moment panic set it. But then I remembered I was 25 miles south of the kids. I’m sure things were fine at home. And I was fine here. That’s as far as I got. My train of thought was interrupted by associates announcing we needed to move to the back of the store to better shelter.
Code Black. Take shelter in the back of the store. Code Black.
What? Really? And seriously, what the heck is Code Black?? Is that supposed to keep me from spinning into a panic?
I frantically continued trying to get someone on the phone. I wanted someone to go get my babies. Of course, calamity wouldn’t dare allow that. That would make things too easy.
I knew I needed more information. I found a Hell-Mart supervisor/manager….whatever. I asked for more information about the tornadoes. Were they north? Were they south?
She just smiled and said, “Mam, we have a Code Black (there it was again!). I really don’t know what to tell you. If I tell you they’re south and you go out there and get yourself hurt, we would be liable. So I can’t tell you anything. Why don’t you just take it easy in the back?”
I can’t tell you what I wanted to say to her. What I almost did say to her. For a small moment, I actually considered giving her a black eye to go with that Code Black. That would teach her.
I stomped out of the store. Associates following me, telling me to come back. It wasn’t safe. Code Black.
Blah. Blah. Blah.
All I knew was I had kids home alone. If things were that bad here, I needed to get home before they got that bad there.
I still couldn’t get anyone on the phone. Finally, I called my pastor and his wife. They would go pick up my kids and keep them until I made it home.
Needless to say, I didn’t get picked up by a tornado. In fact, I’m not sure there were actually any out there. What I DO know is this.
I left a buggy FULL of groceries at Hell-Mart. I had found some yarn I loved. Christmas music for the family. All left. It was the cheapest trip to Hell-Mart ever. All compliments of their stupid Code Black.
I think I could have gone with the Torture Tuesday post earlier. It would have fit.
Oh, and I still have no groceries. So I guess tomorrow will be Wal-Mart Wednesday. Woohoo!
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