Thursday, September 20, 2018

A Trip To the Local Grocery Store

Credit: Photo by ZELMA
The grocery cart became a bit of a problem to one character in my story

I merely wished to run to the grocers to pick up a few items. What I experienced on this day not only shocked me as a fellow human being, but made me ponder

A Trip to the Local Grocery Store

Today I arrived at my local grocery store and proceeded to the outside cart area. This particular store believes in saving expenses and has a system whereby the carts are interlocked and you place a quarter in the slot to let loose the lock. The quarter returned to you upon pushing the cart into another when through shopping.

As I approached the cart area, I saw a middle-aged woman struggling to release the cart from the locking mechanism. Try as she might, the cart would not budge, nor could she retrieve the quarter and get another cart to use for her shopping. At the same time, a man walked up returning his cart, quarter inserted. I told the woman, “Perhaps we can use this cart before it is placed into the locking system.”

The young man barked, “I’ll lose my quarter if you do that!” Instinctively, I stretched out my hand showing the young man he could take my quarter, which he quickly grabbed from my fingers. The woman was now flustered, apologizing for my loss of twenty-five cents. I smiled and waved her on indicating it was nothing.

Through with the shopping spree, groceries placed on the conveyer belt it became apparent there was a problem with the frail, elderly woman attempting to pay her bill. Seems her bottle of water totaled $2.98 and she had a mere $2.93 in her account. People behind me moaned, one woman commented, “Figures I’d be stuck in this line.” The looks of disgust and dismay cast the elderly females way were obvious and surely an embarrassment. Ignoring the rudeness of others, I walked up to the checkout counter and slid my ATM card in the slit, smiled at the woman standing before me with tears of despair in her eyes. I again smiled and said, “Enjoy your water.” She scurried off after thanking me for my kindness.

Once the groceries had been piled in the trunk of my car and having returned the cart and quarter, I walked back to my vehicle. I noticed an old man, a bit disheveled, cane in right hand, attempting to lift what seemed to be a very heavy bag from his cart. Three teenagers stood a few feet away laughing and jeering at each feeble movement this tender man made to lift the bag. I couldn’t help but give them a look of abhorrence before reaching the man’s cart.

“Please sir, allow me to do that for you, this bag looks quite weighty”, I said while picking up the large bundle and placing it in his trunk. He turned to me with a look of relief upon his face and said a simple, “Thank you miss.” I smiled, closed the trunk lid and returned to my car.

As I drove home, I could not help but wonder what was wrong with people. How could they look the other way, ridicule or demean others who were experiencing difficulty. Surely, I was not the only person who would lend assistance to someone in need. And how ironic that one little trip to the store had shown how very self-centered and uncaring people had become.

I write this true story in hope someone will read it and realize how important it is to reach out a hand, say hello to the lonely, share a smile with a stranger and if a situation occurs where you may be able to assist someone, do it willingly.

No, I am not some martyr or goody-goody looking for praise.

You see, anyone of us could be that woman at the checkout counter or in need of an extra quarter or a hand in lifting a heavy package. I am hopeful someone will find the compassion in his or her heart to assist me should the tables turn.

Wake up people! You’ll find if you go that one extra step each day, it will not be others you are helping but yourself who will receive the most joy.

Monica M. Brinkman,

About the Writer

Monica Brinkman is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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13 comments on A Trip To the Local Grocery Store

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By TonyBerkman on November 05, 2011 at 08:29 pm

The truth: "Wake up people! You’ll find if you go that one extra step each day, it will not be others you are helping but yourself who will receive the most joy."

Why is it that society cannot wake up and see that we are all part of the same life? We hurt another we hurt ourself. Isn't it obvious? Yet not only don't we help we bomb countries, people intentionally harm others. It makes no sense.

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By Angie Alaniz on November 05, 2011 at 10:55 pm

Sometimes the simplest gestures are what makes the world go round.

Its very sad to know that people don't understand this simple basic philosophy.

Asking in general:

"Who's Angel will you be tomorrow"?

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By Lartinos on November 06, 2011 at 01:07 am

I agree, being nice just being mean is infectious!

Everyone can think of that one downer that you worked with, why be that person?

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By Lartinos on November 06, 2011 at 01:09 am

No edit feature, lol. I am in trouble on this site, lol! "being nice, just as being mean" I meant

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By TonyBerkman on November 06, 2011 at 01:36 am

No you're in good company. We will add an edit feature.

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By Monica Brinkman on November 06, 2011 at 07:28 am
Lartinos, it happens to all of us. Sometimes I think we need an editor when posting comments or blogging. LOL Thank you all for viewing the story. I just can't think that if I were in need one day, I hope someone would come to my aid. And Angie, wish I were even close to an Angel. Still working on those wings. LOL
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By Philip F. Harris on November 06, 2011 at 08:03 am

Monica rocks!

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By TheOldSilly on November 06, 2011 at 08:43 am

Sigh, very sad indeed, how thoughtless and self-centered folks can be. The young and able have no foresight that they too will one day be old and unable, and those with money forget that they can lose that money very ease. So - kudos to you for remembering the Golden Rule, because what goes around comes around.

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By Kenneth Weene on November 06, 2011 at 09:24 am

It seems to me that this grocery is no place I would choose to shop. It is filled with mean-spirit and inhumanity from management out. I thought you lived in the rural world where caring for others is part of the way of life. I live in a big city and see much kindness around me - especially at the grocery store. How very sad this story makes me.

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By E. Joyce on November 06, 2011 at 11:32 am

Well said, Monica and worthy of sharing. There is something going wrong in this country alone, when it comes to character and caring in our culture. The apathetic need to wake up before it's too late. "The world will be destroyed not by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything." -- Albert Einstein

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By Uttam Gill on November 27, 2011 at 09:04 am

You got a point…yes we all need to ponder over this… Why such thing happens…are people in hurry or they just don’t have any will to help…something is terribly wrong…why is that small gesture of help people are reluctant to offer…We all witness such things in life…Yes as you have done we all can also by our kind gesture can lighten somebody’s heart… Never blink when some one needs a help…Being generous is the essence of life…You have done it and got the peace of life…Keep extending such help…They need you…There are many who are not empowered physically, mentally or financially…one small step of kindness would make great difference in thier life...HELP THEM WHO NEEDS HELP

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By Credo on October 28, 2013 at 09:07 pm

Perfect sermon for a dying society, where people know nothing about respect of the elderly, or honoring their neighbors. This shows that our modern family system has failed to teach their children these fundamental social morals.

Until the family unit is whole again complete with a father and a mother we may continue to see far worse.


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