30,000 Points

The funny thing about living a life where you find the ordinary extraordinary is that even though you’re aware of the extraordinary in the ordinary, it never fails to surprise you where and when you find it.

Arriving at the cashier with my cart stocked full of groceries, I confidently handed the cashier my points card. Why confidently you ask? I had my secret weapon. My daughter had come with me and was a grocery bag packing maestro. No holding up the line while they waited for me to clear the conveyor and pack my bags today! This accommodated my deep-seated fear of inconveniencing people. My smile was extra wide underneath my mask.

My grocery maestro is a wee bit bigger than this but just as cute.

Of course, the downside of taking my daughter with me is that I ended up spending more than expected. Adult rent-paying children have a sense of what they like to eat and feel little shame in adding a little bit to the cart in the form of two boxes of crackers, granola, and some vegan cheese. I winced a little hoping to keep within my budget, but not a pained wince like I do when I bring my husband. On that note, I hide my wince because he seems to feel some entitlement to spend what he wants, being one of the co-creators of the budget and a co-partner in income earning...I know...entitled!

As we reached the end of our successful shopping trip, the cashier looked at my total on the screen and muttered those words that causes sighs from those waiting behind you in line…”If you get $6 more worth of stuff, you can qualify for 30,000 points.” I glanced at the guy behind me who said “It’s okay” with a smile and shrug. Accepting his generosity, I ducked into the next cashier booth to grab 3 containers of mints that we often keep in our cars. The cashier scanned the items and then looked hopefully at the screen. Then, she said, “Shoot…because of tax you’ll need $2 more.” I apologized to the gentleman who waved me on, reached behind me, and grabbed 4 chocolate bars. Luckily in my unthinking way, I grabbed two Twix and two Coffee Crisps. Even in my thoughtlessness, I demonstrated good taste.

She ran them through the scanner, and the screen again failed to display the appropriate points prize. Picking up the phone to call her manager, she realized that the deposit on the pop we had purchased prevented us from receiving the discount. I would have to spend another couple of dollars. Sigh.

I was on the verge of saying let’s leave it when the guy behind me now fully invested said “You gotta do it…it’s 30,000 points!” Then the cashier chimed in, “Yes, 30,000 points!” Laughing, I asked the cashier how many loaves of bread I would need to reach the limit…turned out it was two. Running to grab the loaves, I turned to the man and said “What I won’t do for 30,000 points!” Realizing that may be construed as slightly inappropriate, I covered for myself by adding “There is some great karma coming your way. Thank you so much for your patience!”

Laughing my way out of the store with a very embarrassed daughter, I had the opportunity to impart some wisdom. "There's a great deal of freedom of being in your 40's. You have no shame."

Ordinary moments become extraordinary when people act from a place of generosity and patience and when I run around like a crazy person spending $10 to get $30 later (what 30,000 points equates to). May I remember to be that person for someone else…the patient and generous one…not the crazy one.

Still sending that man some huge karma!

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