Nothing frightens me like a solo trip to the grocery store.
And I’m not talking about a quick stop for milk and eggs on the way home from work.
I mean full-blown provisions for casseroles, crock pots and whatnot.
To her credit, the missus tries to make it easy for me, breaking the items down by section as laid out in a counter-clockwise lap of the place: produce, meat, canned goods, bread, baking items.
And so on.
Before I leave the house, we always go over the list together — as a team would a game plan — to make sure everything’s clear.
“Now you want the Yukon golds instead of the reds, right?’
“Would you take Tabasco if I can’t find the Cholula?
“Sure, that would be OK.”
I exit the driveway pumped. I’m confident that in a half-hour, not only I am going to bring home the bacon, but I also will hand-deliver my wife those skin-on, chicken thighs she requested.
But the high fades as fast as it appears.
And four items into a page-long list, I’m slump-shouldered and panicked.
The rigatoni package is only 12 ounces and she asked for 16. The Paul Newman tomato sauce is two ounces short of the requested 28. I can’t spot her favorite flavor of yogurt. And I’ve never heard of — much less seen — a container of Asian all spice.
Do I call her for clarity? But I’m only on item seven? What if I need her again? What about a texted photo?
I push my cart to the freezer suction and duck my head in, relieved that I’ve found the veggies we had a coupon for. Checkout is in sight. The moment of truth is five minutes away.
I hope I did well.