A Different Kind Of Cartographer

, , , , | Right | November 1, 2018

(The store where I work is very small and has lots of small breakable items, with rather narrow aisles just big enough for a wheelchair. One morning, a woman comes in pushing an oversized shopping cart, the kind used in hardware stores for lumber. She barrels it in through the door and into a display.)

Me: “Excuse me, ma’am? I’m afraid we don’t have the room for that cart in here.”

Customer: “What do you mean? I purposefully brought it here to shop!”

Me: “There’s just not enough room to maneuver it around.”

Customer: “Well, that’s ridiculous! I guess you don’t want my business.”

(With this, she left. I ran after her, asking her to take the cart, but she just flounced down the street and disappeared around the corner. The cart was blocking the entrance to the store, so I maneuvered it back outside, and temporarily left it on the sidewalk while I figured out what to do. I called our store owner, who arrived a half hour later. We decided to call the big box hardware store whose name was on the cart. It turned out the closest location was a seven-mile walk away. The owner called someone with a pickup to come get the cart, but while we waited, the local patrol cop came in to ask why there was a huge cart blocking the sidewalk. The cart ended up barely fitting in the pick-up truck. A few weeks later, that same cop came by to tell us that the woman had brought the same kind of giant cart to another downtown business, this time a jeweller. We started worrying that it was some sort of scam, but nothing was stolen in either case. Why she was walking a giant cart miles down the street to shop at tiny stores remains a mystery.)

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