A funny thing happened on the way to New Brunswick.
After driving for five hours we stopped at a large grocery store in a small town. After doing some shopping, Joe paid for the groceries and took them to the car while I went through connecting doors to a liquor store. It was mammoth. Again, this was a small town. Either the two stores serve a large rural area or the town is made up of gluttons and drunks! Anyways, they had a large 'cold room' at the back of the store where they housed beer and other drinks that need to be serve chilled. I've always thought these rooms very funny, they must be pretty desperate for a beer if they can't wait to take it home and chuck it in the fridge.
I didn't bother looking for a case of beer, Joe could do that when he joined me. I went instead to a display of specialty beers from far off foreign lands or from near by local micro breweries. I wanted to get some Irish beer for Thursday and found, on a shelf almost out of my reach an Irish stout by the name of O'hara's. This appealed to both the desire for something from Ireland but also to the 'whimiscal' side of my nature. I imagined us on St. Patrick's day drinking the beer whilst revisiting the life of Katie Scarlett (you'll either get that or you won't, there's no explaining possible) and I've even got a joke stored up ... at the first burp, 'Well, it's a lovely beer but it's Gone With The Wind'.
Only after about two minutes of browsing, and having successfully loaded my bag with a couple of O'hara's I inched a bit forward. This brought me into view of the two men working in the back area stocking beer cases into neat piles. The mere sight of me over by the specialty beers, sitting individually in nice rows on steel frame shelving, caused them to panic. The older one rushed over and offered to pull me back away from the shelving and then he'd get stuff for me. I didn't notice his panic at first and just said, 'No, thanks, I'm fine.'
Then he actually began to perspire and in a frigid room, I guess it was really a cold sweat. He practically begged me to back up and let him get things for me. Now, I'm a good shopper, I'm equally good at maneuvering my chair around such that I don't topple over cases and cases of beer. I simply said, I'm fine. He waved, I think he thought he was being discrete but in actuality he looked like one of those guys who flag in an airplane, over to the other guy.
The other guy, a little younger, came over and spoke to me simply. 'It's really a tight space in here, let us serve you.' I was now resolute. I would finish my shopping. I then reached for something a little further along from O'hara's. It was a beer that I didn't recognize but I wondered if they would actually shit themselves. I'm not sure but I think the older man did because he rushed off.
I backed up, carefully, got around a tall display and then headed over to another display, but as these were metal cans the fellow relaxed and let me get about my business. On my way out, he called out, 'You are pretty good in that thing.' I slurred when I responded, 'Yeah, but it's a bitch when I'm not drunk.'
And we got in the car and headed on.