We've had some rotten weather these last few weeks.
In the South, we are famous for our storm preparation. My personal preparation involved three frozen pizzas, a box of hot cocoa mix, and a bag of Rolos. But the next day I was with some other folks...and I wasn't driving...so I wound up at Wal-Mart.
I hate Wal-Mart.
So I was content to sit in the parking lot and play on my phone while people watching. But then I saw the truck. A 1984 Chevrolet Silverado 4x4. The thing was jacked up so high that you would need a ladder to load something in the back and if you hooked a boat to the hitch, the angle would drag the motor off the transom before you got to Fosters Mill Store, much less Brushy Branch.
Was I ever in luck! It was Carl Picklesimer's adverse weather truck. When that baby came to a stop, the Dutchess herself, Janeal Picklesimer crawled down a rope ladder out of the passenger side door. She had that look in her eyes. Snow was coming to Paddlefoot. And she was going to be ready.
I opened my own door and jumped into the winter air. There was no way in the world I would miss this. It would be well worth going in Wal-Mart on a snow day to see Janeal work her magic. She would not disappoint me.
I tried to keep a safe distance while maintaining visual contact. As the royal family hit the automatic doors, Carl peeled off and headed his own direction. He had his orders. Janeal took a right and hit the cosmetic aisles. Five cans of Aqua Net hairspray because, snow or no snow, Janeal doesn't have bad hair days. She snagged three bottles of nail polish, all slightly different shades of what I call "hot pink." That's understandable considering it might be late the next afternoon before the roads were clear enough to get back out. Then she grabbed three cans of Right Guard. I think that was because Carl might miss a day or two of work...and be in the house.
Speaking of Carl, he showed up with 4 loaves of bread and 3 gallons of milk. He set the bread up in the child-seat area and the milk on the bottom shelf of the buggy and headed off again. His orders fulfilled, he was now on his own accord. A man has to do what a man has to do.
Janeal cut back across to the grocery section. 2 boxes of Little Debbie's landed in the buggy and there was Carl again. He was holding the biggest bag of pork skins I've ever seen as if it was a teddy bear and a 24 pack of Milwaukee's Best Light like a suitcase. He was ready. Janeal added a case of Spam (yes, a case), 10 cans of sardines, 5 cans of pork n' beans, 2 boxes of Velveeta, a bag of flour, can of Crisco, 4 bags of tortilla chips, 16 boxes of rock salt, 2 12 packs of Sam's Choice root beer, and a box of Franzia White Zinfandel.
I thought she was finished. After picking up a season of Emergency! on DVD and a Duck Dynasty t-shirt, she finally was. Well, except for the 2 cartons of Virginia Slims Ultra Light 120's that she got at the checkout.
This may sound like a simple grocery list for a snow day. But I think it's worth noting that she accomplished this while only removing two items from other buggies when the shoppers weren't looking. She only crashed her buggy into three other buggies. And, most impressive of all, she only threatened to cut one other shopper. A pretty benign prep day for the Duchess.
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Historian, self-proclaimed gentleman, agrarian-at-heart, & curator extraordinaire