Saturday, May 23, 2009

Old Navy.......or a glimpse of hell?

It is well known that I am a lover of all things flip flop. Multi-colored, wedge, leather, rubber, I love 'em all. So imagine my delight when I saw a commercial for Old Navy this morning promoting a one day only sale of flip flops. $1.00 - any color you like. I was so excited!

I promptly began the process of getting my children and myself ready to leave the house; this takes a good hour and a half. I got them dressed, took a shower, got myself dressed, made bottles, packed diapers, loaded Anna into her carseat, and my cousin and I put the babies in the car, buckled our seatbelts and hit the road.

When we pulled into the parking lot, I noticed an unusually large number of vehicles parked in the vicinity of the store. I looked on either side of Old Navy. To the left is what used to be a grocery store that is now closed. On the right is a shoe store that never has more than a handful of shoppers in it. I realized that all of the passengers from these cars were in my store........buying my flip flops.

We searched impatiently for a parking spot less than quarter-mile from the store, finally lucked out when someone pulled out of a spot near the store, parked and went in.

Wait, this is not Old Navy......this is hell. There were people everywhere. Everywhere! Kids playing with the dog mannequin in the front of the store (which I must say I see no use whatsoever for a dog mannequin, it's simply a waste of hard plastic and also kind of creepy), people browsing over every table, every rack. Every register was open with lines going all the way to the very back of the store. I'm not kidding. It was like flipflopalooza in there.

We forced our way through the crowds, maneuvering the ridiculously oversized stroller carrying Anna around people and clothing. We reached the flip flop wall, stopped and stared. Where were the flip flops? They were gone. An entire wall of flip flops, nearly barren. The only remnants were a few pairs of size 5 and 6 flip flops in light pink and purple. Those didn't remain long either; a couple of 12ish year-olds came barging past us and grabbed those off of the wall in a flash of ponytails, plaid and giggles.

I glanced at my cousin, who looked just as shocked and appalled as I was. I sighed, dejected, and began walking towards the baby clothes. Despite this terrible turn of events, I was determined to spend at least a little bit of money. I wandered aimlessly through the racks, grabbing a few pairs of shorts, some shirts, and a cute bathing suit for Hayden. Feeling slightly better, I turned to face the checkout line. The end of the line appeared to be in the exact same place it had been when we first entered the store. I looked from the line to the clothes, then back again. Did I really intend to spend precious minutes of my life standing in this nearly motionless line? No. I put the clothes back, fought my way back through the crowd and exited the store.

Next time, I'll just pay the extra $1.50.

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