I was grocery shopping this morning and had a very strange experience. To give some background about one of my many quirks, I’ll say that I have a mild to moderate aversion to the handles on shopping carts. I don’t know when I began thinking about this, but some time ago I realized that those handles are cootie-catchers extraordinaire, possibly ranking alongside of public bathroom fixtures and doorknobs. Alright, maybe they’re not quite that bad, but they’re close. So I try to avoid the natural lemming impulse to grab onto my cart in the center of that diseased handle, where the plastic cover bearing the store’s name is always protecting the metal structure beneath; I try to forget about that section altogether and push the cart with my hands out farther to the sides, right on the exposed metal part. It’s less likely some kid with a gooey nose (or worse) has been gnawing (or worse) on the non-plastic-protected parts of the handle. Honestly, I’m not neurotic; I simply find layers upon layers of germs (or worse) revolting. But sometimes I don’t think about this dilemma at all and I hold onto the plastic part like everybody else does.
(Do you ever think about these sorts of issues on grocery store sample days when your fingers inevitably wind up in your mouth?)
Anyway, so I’m in the grocery store. I choose my cart. I think about cooties (oh, and here’s the other, less paranoid reason I often grab onto the metal parts–it’s easier to steer a heavy cart that way, kind of like keeping your hands in the underappreciated 10/2 position they teach you in Drivers’ Ed). I ignore the plastic and hold shiny chrome. I walk. I shop. I push. Then I begin to get an itchy sensation in both my palms, but at first it doesn’t register in my mind as significant. I get the feeling again a few moments later, but this time I notice that the sensation is prickly, like static electricity, only it’s surging. I decide to push on the plastic cootie part. Later, I absently revert back to grasping metal and as I stand, not walk, looking over a shelf of goods, I feel a current actually biting at my palms. Am I crazy? The feeling grows more intense and becomes painful. Back to the plastic I go, and by now I’m all attention and wondering what the devil is going on. It happens maybe a half dozen or more times while I shop, regardless of whether I’m in motion or not. It’s never like the usual jolt from built-up static. What is this? If I’d been receiving some sort of electrical therapy, I’d have asked the nurse to turn down the power a notch or two; it was a bit too much for me. Nobody else in the store seemed troubled in the least. Is this as weird as I think it is?
Good contacts with others today:
•ran into my neighbor, Anna, in the grocery store parking lot and handed off my magical mystery cart to her (yes, I warned her)
•Emily’s mom acted as her proxy and brought me a raspberry charlotte from the French bakery this morning–I was out shopping at the time, but I snarfed that charlotte in the afternoon, all by myself (luckless Rob was in Salt Lake on business)
•my out-of-towner cousin, Casey, surprised me with a visit today
•a phone call from my off-the-mainland sister-in-law, Becca
•Irina and her girlies came over to play my piano
•Irina and I practiced our love brokering skills on Casey and laid plans to work a deal with a nice Russian woman Irina knows
•took a two-mile walk with Debby, then shared a dinner of leftovers and some good conversation with her
•bumped into Liz and then later Eric, who are both training for a marathon, at the indoor track
•talked and laughed with Rob at the end of the day
This morning Rob told me about a dream he had last night. He met Bjork somewhere but wasn’t at all intimidated by her. She was having some kind of trouble and he carried her, drooping, to our house and brought her in. I was there too. He thought it was an odd dream. Later in the day I remembered that dream and something about it triggered my thoughts about adoption. A little shiver of a thrill passed through me. I don’t know that that is connected to anything; it was probably my imagination pulling a trick. But I did look up Icelandic adoptions tonight on the internet, and I did find out we’re probably not qualified. Too bad. I’ve been thinking a lot about cute Icelandic babies today. *sigh*