DSC_0027our adventure over the last few days involved dallas. eli mentioned that she had 2 extra tickets to the dallas symphony and wanted us to go with her and frank. eli is my fanciest friend, that is worth noting. we had the time so we drove from arkansas to tx.

being on time is by no stretch my strong point. it haunts me to the point that i avoid even trying to idenify my pattern. it’s beyond traumatic when i run late, my chest gets heavy (like 100 lbs of pressure is about to collapse my lungs & heart), i can’t breathe and feel like i’m on the verge of having someone hate me…. not hate ME but hate that they have to deal with me.

i’ve been in the food industry for 15 years. i pretty much cannot walk into a place of business like the average person. i can detect exhaustion from a mile away which triggers a feeling like i’m on egg shells.

before heading back home we stopped in whole foods 30 minutes before they closed. to back track, whole foods was also the first place we went when we got in town too. that first morning the guy at the deli counter was an older guy, maybe in his late 50s. he had no extra energy to be nice. that set the tone for this late night whole foods panic attack. i walk up to the deli and asked the young guy (late 20s, early 30s) to slice some meat for me. he said in the most nicest tone ever that he wrapped up what i wanted and that he’d gladly unwrap it and hook it up.

i try to drop those kinds of hints at my job more often that i’m able to. i want to educate every customer. for every one step that you see at a store or restaurant there’s 30 steps and 5 people behind the scene to make this process look as painless as possible. i think that’s an unfair role for employees to play because it sets up an expection that is not based on reality. some modern conveniences seem like they promote living in a fantasy. like if i carry out 4 pre-dinner salads with my 2 hands and you ask me where the bread is… i just don’t want to be that person.

so standing at the counter 30 minutes before close i feel like i’m running late and making your job harder than it has to be. i feel like i can’t breathe. you’re being nice to me. i ask for another item that i don’t see… because you already put it away. you stumble on the way to pronounce the brand name and mention that “it’s been a long day”. i don’t think you’re trying the milk the situation. i think you’re telling me in the most humanly way possible while following family friendly codes that you’ve had enough. you’re doing your best.

the panic that i’m feeling is mounting. i never feel like that at the farmers market.

there’s no celine deon in the background or florescent lights overhead. none of the customers look like they just left yoga class or a model shoot.
our farmers market is so relaxed. because we go every week, year round, the farmers always to throw in something extra for free. i always want to give them our money. i always want to pay full price. i really value their products and the atmosphere. i will pay extra to not have a minor panic attack and to feel comfortable in my skin.

i don’t know anyone else who feels this way. i don’t find this experience universal.