Grocery Tale

I didn’t want to go grocery shopping. The baby was fussy and she’d finally fallen asleep in the car, so I put the whole car seat in the cart instead of carrying her in the sling. Market Basket is always busy, but not quite as bad in the middle of a Wednesday. As I walked through the door, I immediately felt angrier. People are going to get in my way. A woman looked at the baby and said “Oooo, a baby,” and then kept walking. That is so weird. I only needed a handful of things. I tried to walk in an organized way through the aisles so I would not need to backtrack. I decided not to get two bags of string cheese for my husband. I saw a woman who looked very sad, and I wondered if I looked sad. I didn’t feel sad, but sometimes you don’t look how you feel. I saw a man approaching me with his cart. He’s not going to stop. He’s going to make me stop. I got angry. He looked up at me. He stopped his cart and smiled. I was embarrassed. “Thank you,” I said. He kept smiling.

3 thoughts on “Grocery Tale

  1. Julianne Vantland

    ohmygosh CATHERINE. Make a whole book of this please? I would love to get lost in your internal dialogue. It’s gorgeous and raw and honest and real and I don’t want it to end.

    1. catherine_hawkins Post author

      Thank you! I explored this a lot more in college but with fiction — I’m excited to use this technique in nonfiction, too.

  2. Hannah Lynn Mell

    Put a grin on my face. I resonate with your Market Basket experience! It feels strangely vulnerable to encounter so many strangers (and sometimes acquaintances) in close quarters. I imagine it feels far more vulnerable with a baby!


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