A Glimpse of My “Real World”

There was no line.  This isn’t uncommon at the “self-checkout” at our Albertson’s.  I swiped my groceries (party stuff for the opening ceremonies of the Olympics tonight), and paid.  As I pulled my sacks from the kiosk, I noticed a quarter in the change return.  I’d used a debit card so I knew it wasn’t mine.  No biggie, I handed it to the self-check helper and continued to load my groceries as the woman went off to help someone else.

Then I saw it.  A twenty-dollar bill in the tray of the next kiosk.  Someone had gotten cash back and forgotten to take it.  I hurried to get it and looked around for the person who had just left.  A man assured me it was the woman who was pushing her cart out the door.  I raced after her.  She shook her head.  No, she hadn’t gotten cash back.  I took it back and wandered around the kiosks looking for anyone who might be looking for it.  Finally the helper woman returned and I handed it into her.  The man was now certain it was some other person and helper gal thought she knew who he meant.


Nothing major.  I had a strange thought as I reached my car.  It had taken me at least five minutes to realize that I wasn’t surprised that the woman I asked said the money wasn’t hers.  I mean, to hear friends in other cities talk, that wouldn’t happen in a lot of places.  If I hadn’t taken it myself, whomever I offered it to probably would have.  I don’t know. 


I’ve lived here so long that I don’t have any experience with a “real world” that is like that.  My real world has people who are honest more often than not.  As a matter of fact, they’re honest so much that we never think about it until someone says something.


As I mulled this over and unloaded my cart into my car, a woman stopped me and said, “I just want to tell you how nice it is to see people being honest.” 


I misunderstood.  My immediate reply was, “I was just thinking about that!  I am so much more surprised that I’m not surprised that she said it wasn’t hers.”


I just realized that she meant me.  How funny.


You know, I like it.  I live where we’re not so jaded as to assume the worst about those around us.  That’s a beautiful thing.


2 thoughts on “A Glimpse of My “Real World”

  1. Our real world is like ours. I’m always stunned when I remember that not everywhere is quite as laid-back as our town is.

    Yesterday morning… wait! I think I’ll blog this myself…. In the morning. 🙂

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