Ever been to a part of the good ol’ U.S. of A., other than the one you live in, and experience some major culture shock? C’mon, you know what I’m talking about. I just know you do. It never ceases to amaze me, though, how hospitable some parts of the country are. Now, I’m not going to get into calling out “this part” of the country versus “that part” because I think the whole “red state” versus “blue state” notion is about as unifying as a wedge. And while I don’t cater to the “why can’t we all just get along” theory all that much, I do cater to the “treat others as you want to be treated” theory.
And so, I’m going to share a wonderful kind of culture shock that I was subjected to a while back. Summertime was drawing to a close, but since Sweetboy was still an “only child” at that point and not yet anywhere near school age, I bravely left Sweetdaddy at home to work and took off on a plane to spend a week with Nana and Grampy. We were visiting them in their latest retirement destination possibility. (Another post for another day…) This particular state is a wonderful smorgasbord of a place, with a bit of everything for everyone; lakes and rivers, the ocean, mountains, and some metro areas along with some very backwoodsy kinda ones. We were in the backwoodsy, along the river part.
One fine day, while winding through gorgeous mountainous roads, we had to make a quick pit stop at the grocery store for a few essentials (ice cream, chips, salsa, beer – in that order!). I left Sweetboy in the car with the grandparentals and ran in to grab our necessaries. I was waiting patiently in line thinking about the order in which I might like to consume said essentials, when the lady in front of me wrapped up her transaction and it was my turn. I noticed that she left her co-cola bottle on the counter next the debit machine. So I, of course, felt it was my duty to hightail it after her and make sure she had it in hand to drive with. It hadn’t even been opened yet, you see. Let no co-cola be left behind, was my thinking. I caught up to this woman in the parking lot and breathlessly said, “Ma’am, you left your co-cola behind at the checkout line!” She beamed. That is to say that she flashed me the biggest toothless smile I could never even have imagined and said, with all earnestness, “Well, ain’t you sweet!”.
It has become a family motto around here. Oh, yes indeedy, it has. Need I say more?