My Christmas shopping is nearly done, but after watching The Mandalorian, I was keen to buy some Baby Yoda T-shirts for my nerdy family, from my husband to my daughters to my son-in-law to my nephew. (I was even going to sneak one in for myself.)
Is it any wonder that we all wanted a shirt with this adorable child?
I had read the T-shirts were available at our local Kohl’s, and that’s where I went.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t successful. Although there were many Star Wars shirts available, there was nary a one with Baby Yoda.
Another woman was looking carefully through the stacks of folded T-shirts, and I asked, “Have you seen any with Baby Yoda?”
She shook her head. “No. That’s what I’m looking for, too.”
“Bet they sold out,” I said sagely.
“Yeah,” she agreed with a sigh. “Probably on black Friday.”
We continued to look through the folded shirts and then shrugging philosophically, we conceded defeat.
I did find other goodies, and I had to wait to pay in a line that really wasn’t too long. However, with only three registers open, the line moved slowly. Being a mother, I am used to waiting, and it takes more than standing in line for fifteen or twenty minutes to fluster me.
This was not the case for the woman behind me. I could hear her complaints before she even reached the line.
“In the old days, it wasn’t like this. Service has gone downhill. I’m not patient. I hate waiting. You’d think at this time of year they would have more cashiers. This is awful. What’s the matter with them?”
Her companion, a man, agreed placidly, “Yup.”
On and on the complaints went, and the man was either a saint or a fool. His unruffled good humor never waned as he agreed with her.
Finally, she said to me, “Don’t you hate waiting in line?”
“No,” I said in a tone that brooked no further discussion. “It doesn’t bother me.”
I could have said more. If the woman hadn’t been so busy grousing, she might have noticed that one of the cashiers, a young man, had a luminous personality that on a scale of one to ten was fifteen. His goodwill flowed from customer to customer, even though he pretty much had to say the same things over and over. It didn’t matter. He greeted each customer afresh, as though it were the first time that he had ever done this.
One register over, there was an elderly lady in a wheel chair, and she was buying lots of glassware that had to be wrapped. The manager came over to help the cashier, and I was struck by their patience and kindness. As they wrapped, they chatted and smiled, and the elderly lady went away smiling, too. I can only hope that I will be treated with such care if I am ever in a wheel chair.
Eventually the complaining woman took her complaining self to the register with the charismatic young man, who thanked her for letting him know that she was upset.
Now, I am aware that there are times when we should complain, but having to wait in line for twenty minutes is not one of them.
In all fairness, I must admit that in the past, I have complained about trivial things. But the next time I’m tempted to do this, I will keep that griping woman in mind and remember how much she missed.