There’s a small green grocer in Salem. I’ll refrain from naming it, but since it’s the only one of it’s kind, sheer triangulation will probably lead you to guessing it. Ordinarily, I never have a complaint about this place, but today was special, apparently.
I only wanted one item: Coffee milk.
There was only one employee at the counter and a customer ahead of me who was ordering a sandwich. Fine, I can wait. But mid order, the employee calls “Maggie” to ring out another customer… not me though. Did she think I was waiting to order a sandwich too? Maybe she could have said, “Excuse me, sir, I’m calling someone out to ring and I can see you only have one item. Would you like to go to that register so that you can be out of here quicker?”
This didn’t happen. Instead, I go to the line where Maggie has gone to ring and there’s another customer ahead of me. Okay, that customer only has a few things, so I guess I can be patient.
“Can I grab one more thing?” The customer asked.
“Of course,” Maggie said, ignoring my presence.
So the customer went and grabbed something. And another thing. And some more things. The employee rang up her purchases and she went to grab more items. Her order was spreading out on the counter like Greek fire and finally, I just returned the milk to the cooler and left. I should have left the milk on the shelf of snacks next to me, as it would have served them right to have it go bad in the time that it took for them to acknowledge their mistake. It’s not like they would have known it was me who left it there, since I apparently didn’t exist in that moment.