Purse-uing The Wrong Person

, , , , | Working | October 4, 2019

When I was in high school, I worked at a farmer’s market that operated out of a very small building. In the fall, we would host a pumpkin patch and carnival that always drew a huge crowd. The fields directly behind our building would be opened for overflow parking and packed full on the weekends.

One busy, rainy Saturday, I was standing near one of the registers to help bag things for the customers who were all crowded around the counter. Suddenly, a woman flung her arm in front of my face, gesturing wildly out the door and yelled, “She forgot her purse! That woman forgot her purse!” 

Wanting to be a helpful employee, and hoping to prevent the woman from getting caught in the rain too long without her car keys, I grabbed the bag on the counter and ran to the parking lot, past row after row of parked cars, until I finally caught up to her. As I held out her bag, she looked at me like I had two heads.

“That’s not mine,” she said, staring at me as I mumbled an embarrassed apology, and she got into her car and drove off.

Dumbfounded, I slogged back to our building in the rain, only to find a confused-looking woman at the register, wondering why I had snatched her purse off the counter and tried to give it to someone else. The woman who caused the whole situation by yelling was nowhere to be found.

Luckily, the owner of the purse was understanding after I explained myself, and took her dripping-wet bag and left without complaint. And I learned to always double-check any instructions I was given at that job, just in case!

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