I went to Target tonight. It's usually my happy place. Tonight was a different story.
I was already in a bad mood because one of my offspring made a boneheaded decision. Do they have military schools in Australia? But nothing like a little retail therapy to fix a bad mood, right?
Well, I needed to pick up some prescriptions from the pharmacy. The pharmacy that is located in such tight quarters that I am certain whoever planned the layout of this Target store has never actually maneuvered a grocery-laden cart through barely wide enough aisles. I started to turn down one aisle...jam-packed with people. So I made the turn into the next aisle. There was some guy in scrubs looking at pain relievers. Dude, can't you get those at work?
"Excuse me," I said. He barely looked up and mumbled something, which I'm guessing was "no," because he and his cart stood there, taking their half out of the middle of the aisle. "Excuse me," I said again, this time not waiting for him to move and just forging ahead. He got the idea and inched his cart over, though still not far enough for both of our carts to fit. "He's probably related to the guy who designed the pharmacy," I thought while lifting my cart's wheels past his.
I finally made it the pharmacy and asked for my waiting prescriptions. The pharmacist found them, rang them up and said "That will be $721."
"What the?!" The ridiculous total was enough to make me sick. So I picked up two of the five prescriptions, told him I'd be back after payday and made a mental note to call the insurance company to see a.) if there are any cheaper options they will actually pay for, b.) how close I am to meeting our deductible, and c.) see how much drugs cost in Australia.
Did I mention that Robbie was with me? And he was intent on finding stuff to put in his locker? He was excited at the prospect of buying something for him, so he was dancing in the aisles, touching every box and bag in front of him and generally stomping on my last nerve, even though he was really doing nothing wrong.
Then we had to buy stuff to pack in the lunch boxes. So, I pulled out my phone and started adding items to my Target Cartwheel savings app as I dropped them into my cart. And then, my phone died. There went my instant saving and my Target mobile coupons. Argh.
They were out of the flavor variety the kids like in the multipack of chips. Of course; by this point I was feeling like I'd been singled out for persecution. I was so frustrated that I didn't even bother to look at the prices of what I put in the cart. Budget be damned.
Peanut butter, applesauce, chips and carrots finally acquired, we headed to the school supply section. For the love of all that is holy, I KNOW better than this. I KNOW that the school supply section is the WORST place to be right before school starts. It's a collection of frantic mothers, impatient children, and shell-shocked Target employees trying to keep the shelves stocked.
And yet, for some inexplicable reason, there I was, pushing my cart down aisles (wider than the pharmacy, thank you Jesus!) full of things that will make for a successful year at school. I found the "locker decor" section. Did you know they sell shag carpets and chandeliers for lockers? Because Mitzi's science book will be so much more bearable if it's surrounded by modern touches of wastes of money.
Robbie didn't find what he was looking for; I'm not sure he knew what he was looking for other than "cool stuff for my locker." So we headed for the check out, where the lady in front of me apparently was taking her Sunday drive in the Target check out on a Wednesday afternoon.
"Do you have any coupons or gift cards today?" the cashier asked me when it was finally my turn. I told her my dead phone tale of woe. She commiserated. I told her about my $700 pharmacy bill. She was sympathetic. When she rang up my York peppermint patty, she didn't even ask if I wanted it in the bag or with me. She just handed it to me because she knew nights like this one called for chocolate ASAP.
That cashier was the bright spot in my trip to Target and I headed for the exit feeling slightly better.
Until I got to the parking lot and realized I had no idea where I'd parked. It might be in Australia.