How long does it take you to “run in” to a store? I suppose it depends on the size of the store and what you need. If you’re running into the gas station to pay for gas, then it will probably take a fraction of the time it would take you to “run in” to a Super Walmart and pick up milk, diapers, and say, deoderant, or something else that is usually located all the way on the other side of the store.
But apparently the phrase “running in” has different meanings for different people. To me, it means ‘get in the store and get what I need as quickly as I possibly can’. To my husband, it means ‘get some shopping done so my wife doesn’t have to get out of the car, and we don’t have to bother unloading the kids’. The problem here lies where my husband is the slowest shopper you will ever meet. This is not an exaggeration. I’m very thankful sometimes that I was blessed with a man who doesn’t mind shopping, in fact, he even likes it, depending on what we’re shopping for, of course. But it takes him forever to get anything. I still can’t figure out why… is it because he reads every package of every brand of every product in which he’s interested in order to comparison shop? Is it because he is unorganized and doesn’t remember what he’s at the store to get? Is it because he gets sidetracked and ends up shopping for three items when he’s in the store to buy only one? It could be a combination of all the above; I haven’t figured it out yet. But what I have figured out is to no longer put myself in the situation of being the car babysitter while my husband’s 5 minute “run in” to the store turns to 10, 20, sometimes upwards of 30 minutes!
Now that I’m in the third trimester of my pregnancy, I don’t always want to go in the store, whereas normally, I don’t mind… like most women, I don’t mind shopping, even if hubby is taking forever and a day in the electronics section. Which reminds me real quick – TANGENT ALERT – a brand-new Super Walmart in a town nearby has the right idea. They put a really nice big magazine section right by the electronics department with benches in between for the wives to park themselves while the husbands wishfully browse the electronics – Walmart doesn’t often earn my kudos, but this is an example of some good store planning! Anyway, back to my venting…
So before the pregnancy, for some reason I was never the one who got to “run in” to the store – I always got the ‘babysit-for-the-3-bored-kids-in-the-car’ job, ugh. I finally put a stop to it because hubby’s “running in” took so long, and then I got pregnant and don’t have the foot power to last very long in stores anyway. So the other day, we’re coming out of a store, and he says, very smoothly as he’s already walking toward the Office Max and away from the car, “I’m just going to ‘run in’ real quick and check for something.” Uh-oh. Did he say ‘run-in real quick’? You may take me for a fool, but I believed him. I thought he would be really quick because we had a meeting with a start time about an hour away, and he knew I wanted to make a few stops before the meeting, so surely he wouldn’t jeopardize my errands by letting Office Max take too long… So I was under the impression that after I waddled to the car and pulled up to Office Max, he’d be ready to go… WRONG! I’ve been through this enough by now to know not to worry… I used to sit there and seriously think, ‘what if he’s being held hostage in the Office Max or what if he’s passed out and gotten hurt or something? But we’ve been together for over a decade, so I now realize he’s just a “forever shopper”. I finished reading the daily newspaper and glanced around – no husband. I put on the radio and listened to a song or two… no husband. I checked the time and started to get irritated, dreaming of the ice cream stop that was going to be one of my errands before the meeting… no husband. I put on the mp3 player and listened to about 3 songs, trying to keep calm and not cry out of frustration (impatience+pregnancy−ice cream = easy tears) … no husband. Now our new car starts to rumble and shake. Since we got rid of the Ford months ago, I didn’t think it was a mechanical problem… then I remembered that the gas light had come on earlier, before my husband “ran in” to Office Max. I turned off the car, and waited some more. Finally he came out of the store – empty handed. I hadn’t thought to turn off the car while waiting for him since he was just “running in”, and now we were out of gas after idling for a good twenty minutes or longer – I hadn’t been keeping track. Luckily there was a gas station right across the street, and instead of walking there and having to buy a gas can, he pushed the car and I steered it over to the gas station… it gave us time to blow off some steam… well, me anyway. I was also wondering what could possibly take a person so long in a store only to have them come out with nothing?!? But, I was literally too peeved to ask and I didn’t want to talk about what happened at Office Max. All I knew is that my errands weren’t going to happen and I was going to the meeting ice cream-less.
In my husband’s defense, he doesn’t do this because he’s not thoughtful or considerate; it’s actually the opposite. He wants to save me from having to go into the stores, and save me from the trouble of having to deal with shopping hassles… and he takes long in stores even when I’m with him, that’s just how he is… He just doesn’t have a very good concept of time, and he doesn’t realize that I’d much rather entertain the kids and myself in the store than in the car. Also, being a woman makes me prone to thinking ahead, while he is impulsive. If he had thought ahead about the Office Max errand, we could have discussed it, and I could have planned to get my errands done at the same time, or even gotten gas while I waited. Instead, since the Office Max errand was brought up at the last possible second when I couldn’t even say no because he was too far away to hear me, I thought it’d be quick enough where I could leave the car on and not run out of gas. The good news out of all this is that the meeting ended early enough that I was able to get my daughter’s birthday party stuff before that store closed, so really the only errand I missed that day was my ice cream. And I can do without putting more weight on my poor feet right now anyway, I guess… And this experience reinforced my mantra that I will NOT wait in the car while my husband “runs in” to anywhere ever again. At least not without a full library of reading materials or a laptop so I can blog about him while I wait… In case you think I’m being too hard on him by the way, I told him I was going to be blogging about this incident – he took so long we ran out of gas, for crying out loud!!! And NEVER will I wait in the car for him to ‘run in’ anywhere while the kids are with us!