On the Scent


Saturday is errand day, and has been since I was a kid. For much of my childhood up to the age of 12, every Saturday we would get into the car and set out for anywhere from 2 to 6 hours of errands.  The routine errands (such as dry cleaning and groceries) were typically done during the week.  Saturday was for special errands--Sears Roebuck, J.C. Penny, the garden store, off to the country to the farm to get corn and peaches, the lumber yard.

I still like to spend Saturday that way.  Especially with a good friend or two.  Yesterday, Diana and I had a very nice day like that.

I did some home errands (e.g., bills and such) in the morning, and then we met about noon, and by 1pm were ready to set out on our quest.  First, to sushi boats.  Diana loves the kind of sushi that looks like the cat threw it up that morning--little bits of yuk and stringy somethings stuffed into a circle with some rice.  I tend to be more conservative--give me the tuna and the whitefish and the California roll.  The great thing about sushi boats is that she can get that stuff without having to ask for it by name (that would provide a serious danger that we would learn what it was, which might make me have to leave the table).  She is slowly winning me over, though.  She passed on the big squid that still had their black eyes staring at us, but did opt for some baby calamari that were bright red.  I ate the first one with my eyes closed, and they were ok, but give me garlic and marinara any day.

Anyhow, after we had sushi-ed, we set off on what proved to be a quest for a couple of small, bathmat sized rugs for my kitchen, to put in front of the two sinks.  They had to have rubber backing.  I've had a couple that I quite loved, but the rubber backing has pretty well flaked off by now, and they are starting to slip around.  I use these so that if I spill water on the floor (If?  I mean when!), it gets on my shoes and then I stand on the mat, and there is no harm done.  Without the mat, the water on the floor causes me to leave black footprints on the kitchen floor.

So, as I have suggested, shopping with Diana is a real experience.  She is an Enneagram 1, a perfectionist, and when she shops, she does it right!  Off to the first store.  A beeline to the proper section--the next thing I knew, she was finding mats and throwing them down on the floor so I could look at them.  There were a couple of OK's, but no goods.  Then off to the next store.  We went up the escalator, and Diana stood there--I swear her nose was quivering.  She took off down the aisle at what felt like a dead run.  I was 10 feet behind when she found the mats. She was down on the floor and burrowing into the stacks.   Suddenly, I had a flash of inspiration.

She was behaving just the way her dog behaves when it smells a squirrel!  The only thing missing was the wagging tail and the long tongue hanging out.  The determined single mindedness, the energy, the determination, were all right there before me.  Of course, I had to share this with her, and we stood in the store howling with laughter.  I'm sure passersby wondered what was so funny in the towels section that had us both whooping.  We finally went on to the third store.  I made her promise to "heel" if I told her to, which sent us into more giggles.  She walked in a most dignified manner right to the proper spot in the store and in 10 seconds found the absolutely perfect mats for me.  Far better than I would have found on my own.  And it was so much fun!

After the mats, it was picking up dry cleaning and photos left for developing, and a wander through the furniture consignment store.  My lord there is some strange stuff out there in the name of furniture.  They had a bunch of bentwood stuff, including a mirror in a frame of inch-thick sticks.  Strange!  And some iron benches whose backs were a butterfly, a cat, and a fish.  Our wallets stayed firmly in our pockets.

After such a hard, intense afternoon shopping, we had an afternoon nap.  Actually, I think it was all the laughing that wore us out.  Then we sat on her back porch and looked at the hundred-plus live oak tree in the neighbor's yard, and finally went out for dinner with Eson.  I drove home when it was still light, and completely beautiful.  I do love my house and living where I do.  I do.

Thank you for reading.

Copyright © 2001 Pete Stevens. All rights reserved.