Monday, May 11, 2009

Humbling Moment

On Saturday I stood in line at a check-out counter for ten minutes. It took that long for the woman ahead of me to convince the cashier that the 10% off coupon she possessed was valid for the single item she was purchasing.

The item? A bottle of aspirin. Cost? $4.77. Savings? 47 cents.

I was not at all impatient. I was frustrated and upset for the woman’s sake. I was also humbled.

Among the items I purchased? Not one thing could be deemed absolutely essential.

To put an end to the haggling and help her out, I wanted to offer to buy the aspirin for her but I don't think the gesture would have been appreciated.

And when I wondered why she didn’t save that coupon for a larger order, it occurred to me that perhaps all she could afford to buy was the aspirin.

I was humbled yet again.

I take far too much for granted.

23 comments:

sherry lee said...

Very moving. Instead of looking at this from the point of view that the woman was just being difficult and demanding, you chose to look at it from another perspective, one that was filled more with compassion and while we'll never know which was the "truth" in that situation, you chose a truth to believe. I love it. It does us good to be humbled now and then.

Cheri @ Blog This Mom! said...

Awwww.

What an empathetic soul you are.

XO

Aunt Reeny's After Thoughts said...

It's always good to be thankful for what ya got...

Cid said...

Every once in a while we need something to put things in perspective. Thank you for doing just that.

Sornie said...

That truly would be a humbling moment. I've done the same but just because I'm really cheap.

oreneta said...

It is so important to remember what luck we do have. I needed the reminder today in fact, I am getting buried in minutae..(is that how you spell that word?????)

thank you for the reminder.

Beth said...

wow. I love your perspective on things and you always make me think.

XOXOXOX

rebecca said...

yes, good lesson there...sometimes we forget how truly blessed we are.

Cheryl said...

I just have to know! Did they take her coupon?

Leigh Russell said...

Humbled and very patient, Beth. I think I would have been glancing at my watch and grumbling under my breath. I hate queueing in supermarkets. I'll try to remember your example next time I'm standing in line. You'll be my role model.

Trish said...

Amazing what we can learn from other people and ourselves if we just step back and look at it from another angle.

The Bodhi Chicklet said...

It's a tough call, isn't it, knowing you can help, want to help but what is the reaction going to be? You never know the whole story behind something like that (behind anything for that matter) but it's good to wonder.

Lainey-Paney said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
cipriano said...

Incredible, Beth.
Incredible because just the other day, I was sort of like the woman you mention there, holding up the flow of things!
I bought two loaves of this awesome bread because it was CLEARLY on sale. I nabbed almost the last two loaves.
2 for $4.00.
But when the girl rang in the first one, it said $3.59 so I was all, "WHOA! Hang on, Missy!"Told her the stuff was on sale.
So she PHONES someone.
[Not kidding...]
Now we are all standing there, and the lady after me, she is also saying to the girl, "Yes, they are all on sale!"
But no.
Whoever she called tells her [on the phone] that the thing is $3.59.
So what was I to do? Cause a big to-do? A kafuffle?
No.
I just bought the ONE loaf of bread... but seriously, what kind of a store is it that doesn't even know what products they have on sale?
Answer --> LOBLAWS!

JR's Thumbprints said...

...and after the purchase, she should've offered you one.

Seraphine said...

i hate coupons. i forget them until after expiration.
i take them the store and the item i want is on backorder. so i get a raincheck, and forget to use it.
i wish stores would just charge their best price for something and do away with coupons altogether.

the lady with the coupon- for whatever reason, it was important to her to get her discount. So good for you for being patient and understanding.

All Mod Cons said...

Maybe she never shopped there, but happened to have a 10% voucher and thought why not use it? Normally she shops somewhere else having had a bad experience in the shop you were in.

Ask her next time! ;-)

(Quality post though...)

Dave King said...

We all take too much for granted. It's good to have a reminder of this now and again.

Cheryl said...

What a great reminder! I love how you see things other people would take for granted. You are a very compassionate person.

cheryl said...

What a great reminder! I love how you see things other people would take for granted. You are a very compassionate person.

VE said...

You mean you didn't say "hey you old bag...my twinkie and coke aren't getting any fresher here behind you either. Move along...green stamps went out in the 70s..."?

Lauren said...

Sometimes I see stuff like that here in Chicago. I too feel like just saying to put it all on my tab, but I don't think it would be appreciated.

It's so true to think about what we have because there are so many people with so little.

Prometheus said...

Thats great. I get the whole taking things for granted feeling a lot recently.

Everyone moans and complains about so many little things. But when compared to how bad it can be, it really isn't that bad most of the time...