Every checkout appeared to be open... I think.... you couldn't get close enough to the checkouts to see them. I did take pics with my rinky dink cell phone (digital camera was in the shopping cart) and when I figure how to get them out of my phone, I will post them here. CHECKOUT LINES?? At first glance it just looked like a mass mob of people, no distinguishable lines. But as you visually scanned the mob at the front of the store, and followed it further and further back through the store, you eventually were able to see the end of the lines. The shortest line? Ha, ha, yea, right.
I worked myself through the crowd of shoppers, finally found what appeared to be the end of a line, and parked myself there.... 12:27pm, standing in the center of the shoe department! Front of the store - Checkouts - walkway end to end of the store - clothing department - walkway - shoe department. Yep, this was going to take awhile. But it was okay, I got the main things I came for. I killed a little time talking to Dave a few minutes (via cell phone) but it was so loud, and reception was so bad, it was difficult to hear. But we still got to say our 'good-nites'. As you looked out across the ocean of people slowly flowing in the direction of the checkouts, hundreds of people were standing, cell phone-to-ear. And throughout the store full of shoppers, people were standing, phone to ear, keeping in contact with people back at home discussing purchase options, and/or, using them as walkie talkies to keep in touch with others in the store in their group, or stationed at other stores (same town, different town, different states even). It was a major overload on the cell phone system and reception was the pits!!! But it was Thanksgiving, and I was so very thankful that, at that moment, there was reception at all so that I could say my nightly good-nites to Dave.
A drone of voices hummed across the store. Those that weren't on cell phones engaged in idle conversation to keep down the boredom of standing in slow moving lines for hours on end. Perfect strangers struck up conversations and made new 'friends.' It was better than Facebook, everyone had a physical body! The woman in front of me was also shopping by herself and we had a great conversation as we patiently waited in line. She owned a camera like the one I was purchasing and was able to, first-handedly, answer my questions about it (If you are reading this, thanks again!). We exchanged crockpot cooking tips, natural living ideas, sustainable living ideas, and several other interesting topics. Our conversation was so enjoyable that the wait in line didn't seem long at all. (Thanks for putting up with my nervous chatter. You unknowingly kept me from a claustrophobia attack, THANK YOU SO MUCH!!)
Before I knew it we were at the checkout. The woman in front of me spied a couple of crockpots in the returns area and jumped over to grab me one, bless her heart, but they were the 7-quart ones, darn it! They were tricky on packaging this year. The packaging looked just like the 6-quart ones, except it said 7 instead of 6 and were nearly triple the price. Oh, well.... I paid for my stuff (including a cheap gallon of water for the car) and headed out to find my car. Fortunately, I had made mental note of the Row Number as I went into the store. I got to my car (so glad it was fairly warm and not freezing, raining or snowing this year), loaded my stuff, popped the hood and added water. I got in, started it up, and it still sounded HORRIBLE. Rummaged around and found my last quart of oil (I was NOT going back in there for a quart of oil!), popped the hood again, and poured it in (I had added power steering fluid before I left home, poor old car.) So here I am, woman alone at 1:49am, hood up on my car propped up with my walking cane, masses of people everywhere, and NOT ONE PERSON stopped to see if I needed help!!! I didn't need any, I had it under control, but no one knew that. It spoke volumes for what our world has come to.
Poor old car had had her rest, had her fluids replenished, and drove like she was eager to get out of that mess and get home. We stopped back at Host's house to pick up the Fur Ball. Oh, he was sooo excited to see me! That was the longest I had been away from him since I had taken him home with me. We had a snack of Thanksgiving left-overs and headed HOME. Thanksgiving Day had finally come to an end. What a day!
It was Thanksgiving, the day to give thanks for all of our innumerable blessings we have received throughout the year. Although, financially, I am so far down I am nearly in a pit with no visible way out, I still have so very many things to be thankful for, so many rich blessings. I am thankful for so many things I couldn't possibly name them all, but I will name a few. I am, of course, extremely thankful for all the things people generally give thanks for. But I am also thankful for things that we so often over look. First, I am extremely thankful (I can't possibly give enough thanks here) for all of my friends and family, both in the physical and cyber world. I couldn't imagine life without them. I am thankful for everyone that has read my posts around the net all year long, and for all of the advice, tips, constructive criticisms and comfort they have given me. I am thankful for taste buds, because without them, we wouldn't be able to enjoy such great holiday meals, and, believe it or not, not everyone has working taste buds. I can't imagine how horrible that would be. And I was thankful for the wonderful Thanksgiving meal that I was able to taste with my taste buds, as not everyone in this world was so blessed to be able to eat such a feast. I am thankful for my sense of smell, with which I was able to smell all of the wonderful aromas throughout the day, and all year long. Not everyone has that sense (I personally know people that don't) and we take if for granted far too much. Although I have to wear glasses now to read, I am so very thankful for my eye sight, with which I can see all of God's beautiful blessings. And, though not so good as it once was, I am extremely thankful for my sense of hearing, which allowed me to enjoy the giggles of my grand kids. I am thankful for the trees that clean our air, give us oxygen, and provide us with many of our day to day, constantly used products. I am thankful for my home and the land that gives me food. I am thankful for the plants and animals that clothe me. I am thankful for the rains and sunshine that makes things grow. I am thankful for the fire that heats my home (It took the rain and sunshine to grow the trees that Dave cut, that is now in my wood stove heating my home.) I am thankful for the ability to breathe and a beating heart. I am thankful that, even riddled with arthritis throughout my entire body, I am still able to move about on my own. I am thankful for a sharp mind. I am thankful for every blessing that has been graciously and undeservingly bestowed upon me, large and minute (all blessings are huge), seen and unseen (all are seen, if we just look closely enough). Regardless of how far down that, on the surface it appears that I am, I can feel a blanket of warm blessings thickly and snuggly wrapped around me, I feel so very loved by my Lord!
And the three best blessing of all this year . . . . After a life full of extra bad relationships, I was graciously blessed last Fall with a most loving and caring relationship with Jonathan before tragically, cancer took him from me and our visual world in March. He was a loving, generous man, a rare find in today's world, so wonderful to me, and I miss him dearly.
I had finally had my wonderful, loving relationship and didn't think I could possibly ever be blessed with another, but, very unexpectedly, a man that I had grown up with in my old neighborhood came back into my life and, once again, I was graciously blessed with another very caring, loving, heart-warming relationship with Joe, who was also taken from this visual world this summer by our extreme, record-breaking heat. Losing him not only left yet another emptiness in me, but an empty hole in the world, as he was such a remarkable, loving, giving person in everything he did. I have no doubt, though, but that Jonathan's and Joe's loving blessings continue on in our world and will forever. The blessings of their love will continue on in my heart forever. I give immeasurable thanks for having been the one to have been blessed with their closest, sincerest love.
Broken hearted and lonely, I didn't think it ever possible to be so fortunate as to be so blessed again with such a wonderful, loving relationship and had resigned myself to settle into and live a single's life, planning out my new life accordingly. Then, very unexpectedly, Dave came into my life.... and, although I don't know what I could have ever possibly done that the Good Lord feels that I deserve it, He has again, graciously blessed me with, not only a wonderful, loving relationship, but a generously, loving man that I hope to have a wonderfully long life with! Thank you Lord, for a year of beautiful blessings far beyond my imagination!!!!