Pure luck

»  mark    23 Nov 2007 @ 22:19    

Ever seen the movie Pure Luck? How about The Out of Towners (the old one with Jack Lemmon)? The day before Thanksgiving seemed to come right out of either of these two movies, a day where things just did not go right.

It started about lunchtime, when Olya went to a little cafe just a couple blocks from our house for her favorite hummus sandwich. Her anticipation was dashed as the new employee working at the cafe brought her something she could scarcely recognize. The bread was soggy, the hummus was almost non-existent, and the vegetables looked like “leftovers.” Usually, the sandwich is so thick, that parts of it fall out as you eat. And normally, after eating just half of the sandwich, Olya is filled, but this time she was still hungry after eating the whole thing.

I stopped by the bank to deposit a check and to pay our rent via account transfer. The deposit worked fine, but the computer system hung up while transferring my money, so I had to move to a different teller to complete the transaction. Thankfully it did not make two transfers.

When I got home, Olya asked me to go to our post office to inquire about a package she was expecting. The Postal Service web site showed that the package had arrived, but it hadn’t been delivered. So I took Maya and we went to investigate only to be told that the tracking numbers indicate when the package arrives at the sorting center, not the post office. So given the holiday, we shouldn’t expect anything earlier than Friday.

Later that evening we went to the store. Or rather I took Elijah to the store with a list and Olya took Maya to Barnes and Noble to try to replace a book she had just bought for something better. Elijah and I were having a tough time, as over half of the things on our list were not on the shelves. We’d forgotten how many people buy groceries the day before the holiday. But to top that off, while I was taking a package of orzo off the shelf, Elijah (who had squirmed around until he was sitting sideways in the top of the cart) leaned over the handle and dove out head first!

I turned around just as it happened. Somehow, his legs caught enough that he did not land on his head, but rather somersaulted and landed flat on his back. As I thought about it later, this was probably the best way a 19 month old child could have landed as the fall might have broken bones if he had landed on his tummy, his feet, his arms, or his head. He of course screamed for a bit, but just five minutes later, you would not have known anything had happened.

While trying to comfort the poor thing, I finished getting what I needed and proceeded to the checkout line, where I discovered I did not have my wallet. So I told the checker I would go look in the car. The wallet wasn’t there, so after about 5 minutes, thinking my wife would be coming back from the bookstore at any moment, we went to find her.

Olya was looking through the section of knitting books while Maya had a dozen comic books scattered around on the floor. Fortunately, she had a debit card with her, so I took it and headed back to the store. Turns out after over an hour looking through some 200 books on knitting, she couldn’t find a single one that she liked!

When I returned to the grocery store, I learned that the checker had taken all my food back to the respective shelves. So I got to start over. We went to another store after that to pick up a few more things, one of which was eggs, and as I put them in the trunk of the car, they fell out on the ground on the end of the carton. After all we had been through, we were not about to give up on that minor technicality. We placed what was left of the carton carefully on some plastic that was in the trunk and made an omelet for dinner. Out of 18 eggs, 7 survived the crash, 5 slightly cracked ones were dinner, and 6 are still in the store parking lot.

It wasn’t until later that night that I realized that I had lost my wallet sometime after visiting the bank.


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