Thursday, August 19, 2010

Man at Costco


The other week I took a trip to Costco with two children.
You know how chaotic Costco can get, especially at the check stand with carts coming and going, etc.? Frequently the question is asked,  'Is this (large item remaining in the cart) yours?'

This particular trip, it wasn't just the case of water they were referring to, it was the child buckled in the front and the other child swinging from the side?

"This yours, the worker asked?"

And in all fairness, the cart was closer to the elderly man behind me in line, and because it had been 'one of those Costco trips' I flippantly responded, "Unless he wants to claim them."

The aged man's face lit up and he responded,
"I'll take them."
And because I tell you, it really had not only been 'one of those Costco trips' but 'one of those days', I replied, "I have three more at home."
Then his face got somber and he more quietly than before replied,
 "I wish I had five kids"

Suddenly I felt a pang of remorse for bringing on this man's somberness, when I'm sure he didn't come to Costco to purchase bananas and milk and a little dose of regret.  But me, with my inherited nosiness keen interest in others (thank you Granny), did what I do too well... I asked questions.

Which turned into a little more somberness as this elderly man told me he had two children, a single son and a married daughter, his daughter though, not able to have children.   With a sigh, he concluded, "I have just two kids and no grandkids."

And though there are days, I find myself day-dreaming of loneliness as a luxury that will forever elude me, the elderly man's face from Costco and his somber words, "I wish I had five kids" come to my mind.

And though, today could well turn into 'one of those days', I will think of the kind, somber, lonely man from Costco.
And remember.

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