We had stopped in Malakoff. We like the Brookshire’s there, and it’s close enough to the Ranch that you can buy perishables that will still be good when we arrive at the Rockin R.
But today we were at the local Ace Hardware store. We had plans to spruce up the main Ranch house and grounds. Just needed a few things before we could begin work. I glanced down at the gas gauge of the truck as we were getting out. “You’d better get gas, looks like we are on fumes.” Paul looked down. “Dang, I forgot to do that before we left. We’ll do that next.”
We wandered around inside, picking up things we needed and looking at things we didn’t. He selected some weed eater line and a couple of boxes of ammo in case we had time for recreation. I picked up a pair of ladies work gloves and a small electric fan that was just the right size for my office cubby back at home.
My husband placed the items on the checkout counter. A very friendly man stood at the register, punching in his code so he could ring us up. He chatted amiably with Paul as he scanned the items. Pulling out a plastic bag, he looked at my husband and asked, “Nice work gloves, and stocking up on ammo I see. Is it your anniversary?”
Paul smiled. “No, just headed up to the Ranch for a work weekend.”
“Oh,” he replied. “That makes sense. I guess if it was your anniversary you’d be getting a new air compressor or maybe a new rifle.” My husband enthusiastically nodded. “Oh yeah, if it was a special occasion I wouldn’t stop at just weed eater line and work gloves.” They both laughed and he opened his wallet. “Dang, I forgot to get cash before we left town. But I found this credit card in the parking lot, will that do?”
The clerk laughed again. “Sure, I don’t care who pays for your goods.”
I stood there smiling, enjoying the small townness of the conversation. Thinking how in my earlier years the thought of leaving town without a full tank and a full wallet would have stressed me out. But life and time had taught me the benefit of going with the flow.
We left the store, laughing at the clerk’s comments. It wasn’t my anniversary, and we didn’t have any cash or gas or much of a plan. But we didn’t need one – we had each other. And plenty of ammo.