Pandemic Observations #14B

We went to the Grocery Outlet for a few household necessities — and the food is definitely getting more picked over. Fruit is getting harder to come by.

It felt strange to come home feeling like a quart of half and half was a major score and some chocolate milk classified as a treat. We bought mostly beverages which was fine because we needed toiletries.

The teenager enjoyed rooting through the reject cans of Coke products— we came home with some orange soda, diet ginger ale, diet root beer, vanilla orange Coke Zero and diet caffeine free coke (which the teen didn’t realize was caffeine free so now she’s excited she can drink soda late at night and not deal with the insomnia she inherited from her father). 25 cents a can.

We realized upon leaving the store that the Dunkin’ across the street was open (drive thru only) so to reward my teenager for getting up so early I bought her coffee and munchkins.

I then expounded on my mixed feelings about this whole situation— that franchise owners of Dominoes and Dunkin and large corporations are making a killing offering services on the backs of essential employees exploited and underpaid. I’m happy they aren’t having disrupted income but—and I spent 10 years in this category as a Target employee—they are being put at risk for people who want coffee and doughnuts.

Then to make it more of a dramatic monologue, my daughter asked why I avoid drive thrus so adamantly. I mentioned that I worked my way through college at the drive thru at McDonald’s. I was primarily a “runner” and I think that’s where I discovered panic attacks. It’s a stressful position, that really has no purpose. The employees are timed. All because people want speed and don’t want to get out of their cars.

But anyway. Sigh.

I’m drinking not only fully caffeinated coffee for the first time in weeks but cold brew. I may have a heart attack before the end of this entry.

I mentioned to the child that I hope she is keeping a journal as this is an experience she may never have in her life again. If I were her English teacher I would ask for 100 words a day.

I also proposed that someday her children might be required to do their public school education virtually and she could tell tales of back in the day when she used to walk to school and sit in a classroom with other kids.

That thought gave her pause.

I originally planned to discuss meal planning now that food is becoming sparse but I can do that another day. Or later.

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