Sometimes little snippets of conversation that seem innocuous at the time become important. Evidence: a sale on cheese.
On Friday, my boss gave me the day off to go and visit my Mom. Did I mention that I’m self-employed? It’s a three-hour drive each way, so I planned to leave early, spend a few hours with her and then be back home before a snowstorm arrived. And I wasn’t going to tell her that I was coming. It would be a surprise!
Near the end of my journey, as I approached the town of Smithville, there she was, in her car, waiting for a pedestrian to cross the road so she could make a left turn. “It’s on!”, I thought, as I found the first safe place to turn around and give chase.
She’s small and she’s quick. I couldn’t catch her or even see her vehicle but I was pretty sure I knew where she was going. You see, during a phone conversation on Thursday, she mentioned that the only thing she wanted to get before the snow arrived, was Black Diamond cheese on sale at Food Basics for almost half price. We are a family of cheese-lovers. Curd, block, sliced, cream; cheddar, brick, Monterey Jack – we love it all.
Knowing the nearest Food Basics stores were in Grimsby (the opposite direction) or Dunnville (the way she was going) I made the Dunnville store my target. My confidence ran high. I was sure I’d find her there.
Twenty minutes later I was cruising the store parking lot and there was no sign of her car. I visited a couple of other popular store parking lots in case she had other errands to run but no dice. “Nertz”, I thought. I must have guessed incorrectly. My Plan B was to return to her condo, for which I have a key, and wait for her there. But I decided to visit the house-of-cheap-cheese parking lot one more time. And there it was. Her car in all of its perfectly parked glory.
And there she was in the produce aisle, that shares space with pre-cooked ham, because Food Basics is like that. Basic, no display room wasted. Slowly and carefully, I ambled up beside her and in an accent not associated with any human speech on earth said, “So meesus, you vanting good ham, yes?”
I only wish I had video of her reaction. She stepped back a couple of paces, her eyes got as wide as the ham in her hand and her mouth formed a perfect, soundless circle! Priceless.
We ran more errands together and hung out at her place until it was time for me to come home. And we ate ham and sale-price-cheese sandwiches. Because it’s not just mice that are attracted to cheese.