I love Trader Joe’s, like visit it for fun sometimes to try samples and buy more wine I don’t need kind of love. The store is so cheesy with its warehouse, pirate themed, whatever it is that draws me in. And the food, delicious cheeses, wine, beer, nuts, dried fruit, frozen fruit, boxed food for those days you can’t pull a meal together to save your life. Oh, and the chocolate covered almonds with turbinado sugar and sea salt. YIKES, I could eat that whole darn box, but the follow-up conversations with the toilet might kill me.
Anyway, the Trader Joe’s near us has a deep, dark secret. Actually for most moms who shop this location, it probably is no secret at all. The parking lot is terrifying. I’ve been scared out of my mind a handful of times, and know others who have mentioned similar life-threatening experiences.
My first near death experience was a beautiful sunshine-filled ball of happiness kind of day. My sister was visiting with her kids so counting my oldest, we had two adults and three total human children, and one baby in my belly, my youngest. Our happy-go-lucky group had just purchased those almonds I mentioned above because I was a whale and always hungry when I was pregnant, so we had to have chocolate on hand at all times. We were carrying our goods out to the car, with those three children in tow, and moving at a snail’s pace, because that is what moms do when they are pushing a cart uphill, trying to motivate small children to get their butts in gear and follow said cart. This jerk in a convertible pulls up behind us and basically starts tailgating us. We were walking! He was tailing us like someone would on the highway who was trying to pass, and eventually, when the other lane cleared out, he revved his engine and passed us by slamming down on the gas and whizzing off into the distance. I had no idea what was going on at the time, just sweating and thinking how fast I could get those almonds in my mouth. But once he slammed the gas, I realized quickly that we were in danger. Luckily no one was injured, but seriously, not safe dude. My sister proceeded to scream at him as he floated away in his stupid red convertible. What dude drives a convertible by the way, and tailgates women and children in the Trader Joe’s parking lot? What sort of person is this? I digress, the point is this parking lot is not safe.
Another instance occurred last week when I took both munchkins to Trader Joe’s because we had a little time before preschool. I’m not pregnant now so chocolate wasn’t on the list. Their olives and sun-dried tomatoes were on my list, man those are delicious in my Veggie Orzo. But anyway, we were walking inside the store and stopped to grab a cart when we all heard screaming. This poor woman was helping her probably 2-year-old daughter up from the ground, the precious angel baby had fallen in the parking lot, while her two sons were running like deranged lunatics toward the store. She was honestly paying attention to the one who she thought needed her most, but those boys were in danger and my heart dropped when I saw a man in a car driving about 40 miles an hour through the parking lot. Yeah, I know, right! Slow down for the love of babies and mamas everywhere! The kids stopped running for whatever reason, they were actually in the cross walk, and the man decided it would be a good idea to lay on the horn, like somehow this would help the situation. Hey jerk – slow down in retail parking lots, how about? That might be fun.
My message, slow your butt down in retail parking lots. For real, what exactly are you hurrying to when you just got done shopping at Trader Joe’s. You afraid those chocolate covered almonds are going to melt? Or maybe your bok choy needs to be cooked right away? People drive me bonkers. This post has very little to do with food, and I apologize, but I just felt the need to vent. Oh, and let ya’ll know, if you see me and my kiddos wearing helmets and armor to buy some food at Trader Joe’s, you’ll know exactly why.