Monday, January 23, 2012

The Grocery Store

The local grocery store is a gathering spot for our small community, a meeting place of sorts. Today I counted four groups of people stopped in the aisles, carts side by side, comparing experiences of the snow storm that dumped 13 inches of white powdery snow on our community this week.  Old and young were out to replenish food supplies that were depleted during the week of school, business and road closures. It was most likely their first venture out now that the streets were safe to drive again. 

Two elderly women, dressed in rubber boots and heavy coats with bright blue flannel scarves, were standing at the front entrance when I arrived, and still there 30 minutes later when I left.  The slump of their shoulders and the sad and somber looks on their wrinkled faces spoke of some recent tragedy. 

In one aisle, a mother was trying unsuccessfully to quiet her young crying baby, while the father hurriedly gathered canned vegetables and tossed them in the already chock-full cart. Their young daughter glanced around, head down and eyes darting to either end of the aisle as if she were embarrassed her baby brother was behaving so badly.

A brilliant rack of ruby red valentine decorations and heart shaped boxes of chocolate covered candy filled one aisle making sure everyone knew it was time to get ready for the next holiday. Three teenaged girls were reading the valentine cards, laughing loudly, making smooching sounds, and poking each other in the side.

Even though the harried check-out clerks were busy, they had a smile and a sincere word of salutation for each customer. I stood in line behind a young boy who simply couldn’t stand still.  His mother carried a cake with “Happy Birthday” written on it.  She raised her eyebrows and laughed, “Grant has ants in his pants.” Grant said, “I’m six, I’m six!” as he hopped forward like a kangaroo when the line moved. 

 As I left with my purchases I was surprised to see bouquets of golden daffodils and flats of purple, yellow, and white pansies displayed to the side of the entrance. They did look cheery, but with snow still in my flowerbeds, I wasn’t quite ready for spring yet.


  1. Nice story, PW. Let's see if my laptop allows me to leave a note here. My PC won't.

  2. I love your observations. Looking around like you've done provides us writers with an abundance of material to put on paper. Just look at what you've written here based on what was going on in the grocery store after the snowstorm.

    You've painted a picture of the aisles in the store and the activity going on up and down them.

    Then you topped it off with your thoughts regarding the super early display of flowers.

    I hope all is well with you as life returns to normal after the excitement that the weather dumped on your neck of the woods.

  3. Thanks ladies! I've just started another ed2go class "The Writers Guide to Descriptive Settings" and this was assignment two: go to a meeting place and describe it using similie, metaphore,alliteration, etc.

  4. I think I took that class too. Wow, that was a long time ago. I need to get back in the swing of things.

    This reminds me to look up once in a while. I get so busy and wrapped up in what I'm doing, I forget to notice what's around me. Thanks for sharing your assignment with us.

  5. Taking those classes sounds like so much fun! Mind if I live vicariously through you. :-)