Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Midnight and WalMart

The pool is open every day now and we are staying busy. Not busy every minute (I am, after all sitting here blogging), but the kind of busy that requires a presence in the store during the time that people are in the pool. The pool opens at 11 am and doesn't close until dark. Most people will be gone by 6 pm to attend to, well, life. Last night every one left by 6:30 and I went out to harvest more cherries and got to thinking that as long as I was feeling pretty energetic and had no pending reservations to wait for that I might as well make a WalMart run.

I usually only leave the park this time of year when Drew is here to take care of anything that comes up. So, I put aware my bounty of cherries and gathered my list and coupons and was blissfully walking out the door when a car with two young men pulled in and wanted to know if it was too late to get a site for the evening.......... I wasn't thrilled, but I escorted them into the office to register them. When I asked what kind of site they were looking for, the young smart alec asked me what kind of sites I had. So I recited the list of possibilities and got that blank look. So I said, "I am assuming that you want a tent site since you do not appear to be pulling any type of RV behind you. I just need to know if you want electric or primitive for your tent site." This required a long discussion between the two about the virtues of electric versus non. After they decided that they did not have anything to plug in they wanted to know if I had any cabins. No. Do I know if the state park has any cabins and if they do how much they would cost......... Finally after another discussion they decide they want to stay and one of them starts filling out the registration. "I'm only 16, is it legal for me to be here? He's 26, but I am 16." Now I am beginning to wish that I had simple told them I was closed. Instead I ask why he would ask such a question and was told that somebody told him he was minor. Finally we finish the transaction while the older beefy guy is regaling me with tales of his fishing prowess. I think I am going to get out and lock the door.....I was so close. Now they want to buy bait. Oh, no, they spied the soda machine. It is equipped with a glass door on the front allowing one to see right through it to the contents. These two will have none of that as they stand with the door opened wide to accommodate another discussion on which flavor to buy and whether to get a plastic bottle or a can. They decide to share a 24 oz Mountain Dew and I think my trial is over............. Hot dogs. They see that I have hot dogs. They fondle both packages and I can feel another debate brewing. Beefy guy really wants steak. I advise him that I don't have steaks for sale before he can ask and tell him to go into town to the grocery store.

As I am all but shoving them out the door the younger one looks at me and says, "I bet you camp a lot, huh?" What? I didn't answer, just wished them a lovely evening and wondered about the thirty minutes of my life that I will never get back. Perhaps this was an omen and I should have simply stayed home and pitted my cherries. but, no, I hopped into my ride and headed for WalMart. I did call love of my life to tell him to have the state patrol do a drive through. I thought the two were harmless, though not really big in the smarts department. A show of law enforcement couldn't hurt.

I strolled through WalMart, list in hand and soon had the cart overflowing with camper necessities. The store is always easy to shop this time of night and I carefully considered the clearance aisle since you never know what treasures lay hidden. I had vowed to stick to my list and do no impulse buying. I was not going to go near the fabric, no, I was not! But I had to walk by the outer aisle to get to the grocery department, didn't I? Last year Maya asked for a dress with watermelons on it. I saw, out of the corner of my eye, some watermelon fabric. It was the pre-shirred sundress fabric. I don't care for it so much, but it has watermelons......... She is only a little slip of girl and the dress will probably hit her ankles, but it only takes half a yard for her size and if I use the applique stitch for the hem and do away with the black band at the bottom it should work. Of course I bought it! Been looking for watermelon fabric every time I get a chance.

Buying fabric always makes me happy and it was with a light heart that I headed for the check out. Only one full service lane is open and self check out is not an option for me since this is a tax exempt purchase. Two people ahead of me with not much stuff....why is it taking so long? I stack all my stuff on the belt and give her my card. She studies it and then perches the reading glasses hanging on the chain around her neck on her nose. Peering carefully she enters the numbers one by one and then stands staring at the machine. Finally she hands me my card and starts scanning the merchandise ever so slowly, sooooooo slowly. I knew I had at least $300 worth of stuff and was really tired and wanted to get done and go home. She was old and I know that if I am lucky that I will be old one day, too (and if I am REALLY lucky I won't be scanning on a check-out in a WalMart!). I look behind me at a line forming and mouth "I'm sorry" to all those waiting. I don't know why I feel guilty, but I do.

She scans the last item and I give her the coupons (and say I'm sorry to the people behind me, some of them are now sitting on the floor). She tries, she really does. I had several free items in the coupons and I tell her to give me the copy she has pulled up and I will find them for her. She is by now in total confusion as she scans the coupons without stopping to enter the prices of the free items. Up until this point she has scanned and then watched it appear on the screen before moving on. I know that she has missed a couple of the coupons and I figure I will take care of it later since I have now spent more time at the checkout than I did shopping. I also had some frozen food I was worried about.

I drove home a little slower since I don't see all that well in the dark and I was tired. I finished unloading the car just as husband came home. He headed out to shock the pool and toss in the robot to clean it and I put away all the cold stuff. Then I climbed into my freshly made bed all ready to relax and peruse my receipt. I found that she some how charged me 4 times for one item that cost $10.88 and none of the free coupons had been credited on the receipt. Over $35 was due me, so, like a good consumer I called the store and got a "manager". He sounded all of 15 years old and was rude. I offered the receipt and transaction number and was told that the only way he would help me was for me to bring my receipt to him. Then........ he hung up on me.

I was, indeed, going to take my receipt to him, but love of my life would not let me. Instead I e-mailed a complaint and followed up with a call to the store this morning and spoke to the manager. I reminded her that an error was made last year when I was credited with $50 too much and called promptly and offered to drive back with the money. I knew the cashier's drawer would come up short, and I let them know right away. They are issuing me a gift card for the money due me. Other than firing the little jerk who hung up on me, that's all I wanted.


luksky said...

One of my pet peeves is to have to be inconvenienced for someone elses mistakes...grrrrrr....

ellen abbott said...

People can be so tedious...oh I meant to say clueless...um, no, maybe...well, never mind. My anti-social tendencies must be poking through.

Lover of Life said...

You certainly have your patience tested!

lovelyprism said...

Wow, you were a busy little bee! The bit about the people sitting on the floor made me laugh out loud. Why on Earth don't they ever have enough cashiers at Wal-Mart? They should have opened another checkout line.

Missy said...

I hate WalMart! My husband went there yesterday to purchase 4 items and it took him an hour. There was a lady in front of him with a full cart much like yours. They messed something up and had to START OVER! I love your camper stories....always makes my laugh!

Joy and Phil said...

Glad you got it all worked out and received the money owed you! You know I hear and read complaints about Wal*Mart all the time but as a fulltime RVer I love that place. We know it has faults but we work around them ... most of the time.
The naysayers should try shopping at the big chains where they will pay twice as much for anything that is not on sale and you learn to like Wally World really quickly.
Keep smiling girlfriend!

Sandi McBride said...

The trouble with trying to run a business is people...but then without them you wouldn't have a business. Is this what is known as a catch 22? Oh well, let me grab my keys and run to WalMart...I find my sanity there, lol!

Andrea said...

Ugh I hate when that happens. It seems like cashiers just run the stuff through so fast. I always like to watch the little screen - some of them get annoyed when I do that.

You have more energy than anyone I know. I'm always amazed how much you can pack into a day! Please post a picture of the watermelon dress!

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

Some days you just shouldn't get out of bed! I can handle stupidity but hate rudeness. Watch for his car next time then sneak back and let his tyres down!