I went to Celebrations yesterday to get a condolence gift for my friend who lost her precious doggie of 15 years, Franklin. May he rest in that great Canine Steakhouse in the sky. Losing a beloved pet is a special kind of pain, huh? I’m sending you a hug if that’s ever happened to you.
Anyway, I started sifting through something and laid my keys down. Have you ever been to Celebrations? I’m just gonna tell you right now, don’t lay your keys down in that store. They’ve got more shiny baubles than a Dolly Parton makeup trailer.
I went to the counter and purchased my gift, got to the car, and discovered my keys were missing. Lawdamercy, I walked back into that store and started looking.
“Found ‘em!” I shouted. “Y’all tell Rachel I found ‘em.” I know Rachel because she helped teach my daughter in three-year-old preschool. Maybe I should have given Rachel the gift. Miracles come in all forms: found keys and preschool teachers.
I get in my car and drive through North Hill to my friend’s house and text her that I’m out front and gonna leave something on her porch. I start looking around for the gift. There’s no gift. Well tacos without tomatoes, I left the goody at Celebrations.
You guessed it. While I was looking for my keys, I sat down the gift. I got back to the car with the keys and not the gift.
She starts texting wondering where I went, but I’ve already done a U-Turn and am back on Cervantes headed for Celebrations. I can’t tell her where I went, because I’m driving. So I start hollerin’ at Siri to text her, but Siri can’t understand me because of my accent.
Could somebody be a peach and develop technology for folks with southern dialects? That’d be really helpful.
Me and Siri sound like two seagulls goin’ round over a crab dinner. I’ve got insurance on that iPhone for a reason, but I do keep my windows rolled up.
“Hey, Siri!” I shout.
“Mmm-hmm,” she responds.
“Could you text Evelyn?”
“Which one? Joe Smith or Laura Smith?”
“No, could you text Evelyn?”
“I won’t send it.”
“No, hey Siri…could you text Evelyn?”
“Would you like to change, cancel, or send?
“WHAT? No. Stop. Siri.”
“No problem, I won’t.”
And by this time, I’m back at Celebrations and have to do the walk of shame in front of people that just looked for my keys not 10 minutes ago.
“Genius alert!” I call when walking toward the register. “I was so busy looking for my keys that I left my purchase,” I explained sheepishly before heading back out on my delivery.
No one missed a beat. Maybe I’m not the first lunatic to leave her possessions all over East Hill. But they were as nice on my encore as when I paid.
It’s one of the things I really like about Pensacola: most people are pretty nice.
I’m sure somebody in the comments will tell me about the time a person was not nice and cut them off at the corner of somewhere and somewhere else, but I think for the most part we’re good people.
Speaking of southern dialects and phrases, have you heard that one? Good people. Do they say that in other places? “She’s good people.”
In the south, being good people means you’d take care of and return a loaned fishing rod; it means you’d not talk ugly about somebody going through a hard time; or you’d mow your neighbor’s yard in secret when you know their lawnmower’s broken.
Sometimes being good people means you stop what you’re doing and help a crazy lady find her keys…and her purchase, and genuinely don’t mind doing it.
And other times, being good people means you have to sit with fifteen-year-old dogs while they cross the rainbow bridge, even though it hurts real bad.
Whatever you’re doing today, I hope you see ‘em. But more importantly, I hope you’ll be ‘em.