I checked out in the back of the store. I was getting glass cut for the broken window pane in our dining room. I bought two other items around the store while we waited so when the clerk saw my cart, he told me he’d just ring me up there. The boys were playing with things they shouldn’t have been playing with. Like spinning around kid carts and flipping wheel barrows and turning stuffed pigs on and off and reorganizing wooden shims. I had no energy to scold them for I had already been going strong for 8 hours straight with my guys. And what’s a little free birth control for those youngins on summer break? I began my walk from the back of the store to the front of the store while I calmly called the cattle to follow. They did.
As we crossed the metal plate at the entrance, an older gentleman who worked at the store walked out with us. He crossed our path and walked in front of us as I told the boys to hold the cart because we were in a parking lot now.
That’s when he said it. Rocco. As loud as he could. With a tone to his voice that any stranger would find hard to disbelieve. He was shocked and said,
“MOM!!! Why did you STEAL that stuff!?!?! You didn’t even PAY!!! You just walked OUT!!! MOM!!! You STOLE that!!!”
The gentleman in blue turned to me as my right toe hit the wheel of my cart and I fumbled to get hold of my receipt. ”I did not steal anything; I would never do such a thing! Are you serious? Look! Here’s my receipt! I paid in the back of the store where they cut our piece of glass!” I said while I jiggled the receipt in the air for all to see.
Mortified. The employee glanced at my receipt and looked in my eyes but said nothing. And Rocco… “MOOOMM!!!” I couldn’t believe I was explaining myself to a six year old. I wanted to scream, “You know, while you were spinning the carts in circles, knocking over red wheel barrows, turning on and off the stuffed oink oink PIGS, I was PAYING!” But we all know that argument would be pointless. I refrained, got in my car and we drove away.
To the wine store, where I said through my teeth, “You touch one glass bottle in this store and there will be serious consequences.” Serious as serious could be for a mom who seriously needed to come up with that serious consequence quickly before…
“Touch. Touch. Touch.” he said while he pretended to touch the glass bottles sitting neatly on the shelves.
I took my bottle to the cashier where she graciously wanted to wait until the woman ahead of me was 150% put together and ready to leave, bags in hand and 10 feet away from her counter before she could begin my transaction.
All the while, Roman found time to pick up a mini bottle of liquor and ask her, “What kind of wine is this wine? Pee wine?” *giggle giggle, snort snort*
“Are they yours?” said store clerk.
“Uh-huh! ALL THREE! :)”
“Yep. Three boys; that’s correct!” I said.
and onward we marched.
To the car carts in the Giant Eagle parking lot.
We made our way through the store without any major mishaps. Picked up our chicken for dinner. Cookies for me. 4 loaves of bread because they were buy 1 get 1 FREE. I love those signs. And then we headed home.
I could’ve fired up the grill but the grill pan just sounded more relaxing to me. That was, until the smoke started to rise and sweet Nest told me that smoke was in the kitchen.
The chicken wasn’t burning. In fact, it was still raw? I waved at it with Rocco’s homework schedule that he should have been following along all summer that we’re now cramming into 2 weeks. I canNOT be the only mother who forgot about this packet.
And pardon me, but that’s when all hell broke loose. It kind of went like this… in speed motion.
The door opened. The chime went off. Beep! Beep!
Brian walked in. Daddyyyyyyyyy!
The dog barked.
The Nest started talking about smoke in the kitchen.
Brian mumbled something, “ajhsdfjjlkjulfhhjsduya!”
The dog barked.
The kids ran. Their PiggyToes pounding off of the hardwood floors.
The smoke alarm went off.
Smoke from the grill pan was rising yet the freaking chicken wasn’t even burned. Just COOKING.
The dog was barking.
Voices were everywhere. The Nest. The security system. The dog. The kids. The baby. The husband.
I opened the back door.
The Nest was still talking. ”There is smoke in the kitchen.”
I took the pan off of the burner; the chicken was done.
Brian waved at The Nest then the security system was beeping. I put our salads together and we sat down. Brian grabbed his phone (for Guardian to call).
We said a prayer and took one bite.
And that’s when the town siren went off.
The. TOWN. SIREN.
“Good Lord. This can’t be happening. Oh no.” I said.
“This is an $800 fine!” said dear hubby.
“No. No. No.”
*ring ring* (It’s Guardian.)
I sternly answered the phone with, “You didn’t even call and the town siren went off; everything is ok! Now the fire company is coming! You didn’t CALL! You’re supposed to CALL first before sending the fire company. I WAS COOKING CHICKEN!” (This poor, poor man.)
“Mam. We called. We left messages. The fire company is on their way. Do you need anything else from Guardian Protection Services?”
“Oh no no. You need to cancel the fire company. We’ve had our phones right here. No one called.” (as I show the Guardian guy Brian’s cell phone as if we were Face-timing or something.)
bahahahahahaha – I mean, all you can do at this point is laugh, right? Because now the TOWN siren is going off.
“GET THE DOG!” I said as I grabbed Mario (in his diaper) and headed for the front door.
And there they were. The first 2 to arrive on scene. “Beep! Beep! Beep!….”
Big black truck. Fire-truck. Police. It was like a Touch-A-Truck Event in our front yard.
Listen. Long story short. It’s. All. OK. Nothing; not even the chicken was burned.
You see, what happens when you live in a super, small, quaint, little, adorable town, is that when your smoke alarm goes off and you have Guardian Protection Services who signal the fire company to come, the fire company gets to your house within 30 seconds before Guardian even has the time to cancel. Because when you live in a super small, quaint, little, adorable, town, the fire company is all but 2 short, little, tiny blocks. (<– have a field day with that, grammar police.) The End.
Listen. It’s good to know that these guys are ready and able if there’s ever a real emergency. I mean, they were impressive. All 900 of them. And their trucks. And garb. And hoses. And hats. And equipment. And stuff… like that.
It was quite an evening here at the farmhouse. Heck. It was quite a day. After I stole from the hardware store and then took my three little girls to the liquor store…
Just a good ole’ August Day.