Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Weird at WinCo

I've been shopping at WinCo Foods for over five years now.  I know some people who don't like shopping there, but we're all about saving in this house, so that's where I go.

Granted, the clientele is, well, different from what you'd find at Safeway or Fred Meyer, but I don't mind too much.  It's never been that strange.

But yesterday was just weird.

When we were walking into the store, I noticed a lady with a bunch of what looked like bracelets inside of baggies walking around the parking lot.  Ellie wondered if she was going to a birthday party, because why else would you have so many bracelets?  But I forgot about her as soon as we got inside.

We did our shopping and left the store.  Just as I got the car unlocked, the bracelet lady approached me.  Apparently she made the bracelets herself and was selling them to support herself.  Okay, I thought, we like bracelets in our house.  They were nothing terribly fancy, but she was selling them for a dollar apiece, so I bought one for Ellie.  She thanked me and moved on to the next potential victim customer.

I hadn't even finished saying goodbye to the bracelet lady when I felt a tap on my shoulder.  I turned and found myself face-to-face with an older gentleman pushing a walker.  He grunted a little (kind of like the no-face spirit in the movie Spirited Away - if you haven't seen it, you should) and held out a small green card.  On it was printed: "I am DEAF.  I am selling these cards with the DEAF ALPHABET to raise money.  THANK YOU."  On the back was a very small image of the manual alphabet.

I asked him (hoping he could lip-read) how much, and he held up first one, then two, then three, then four fingers, followed by a shrug.  I assume he meant dollars.

I have no problem paying a dollar for a hand-made bracelet, but it seems like a bit much to pay for a business card-sized piece of paper with an extremely hard-to-read "deaf alphabet", especially when I, and all three of my children, for that matter, already know it.  So I took matters into my own hands (ha!) and finger-spelled, "I'm sorry, but I don't think I can today."  Sadly, I'm not 100% sure he even understood what I was saying.

Now, I truly am all for supporting those in need, and if I hadn't already given the bracelet lady a dollar, there's a good chance I might have gone ahead and paid for the little card, but really?  What are the odds of being hit up twice in and afternoon?  Or even in a day?  Let alone in the space of two minutes, without even moving my feet?

WinCo (or at least its parking lot) is now officially a weird place for me.

After I got in the car, Ellie said I should have shown him that I know the signs for "more", "grumpy", and "silly".

1 comment:

  1. Well, if you ever need a little extra cash, you know where you can go to sell your wares!


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