while at the grocery store
(embarrassingly, for the first time in weeks)
I meandered for a bit
and then got in line to check out.
As I got everything in order to pay,
I noticed the adorable "bag boy" assigned to my cashier's line.
(That term always sounds so demeaning, but I'm not sure what else to call them- "receptacle boy?", "one who carries your groceries to your car?", "17 year old kid who asks you if you prefer paper or plastic?")
He was probably still in high school,
with big brown eyes and scrawny little arms,
and I watched him intently line up my groceries as he prepared to place them in my paper bags.
(That's right. I choose paper. I weep for the trees.)
as he began loading up my purchases,
he said to me,
"Ma'am, I bet you are quite excited for our new all organic grocery store to open soon."
I looked at him, blinking for a second before realizing he had assessed a few of the organic products I had chosen and concluded that I would indeed be excited by such an event.
"That IS exciting," I said to him. "I'll definitely be doing some shopping there when it opens."
I laughed to myself and continued with my business.
And then, looking down at my bank card,
"Are you satisfied with your choice of personal bank? Because our in-store bank is really a time saver."
I looked at him for a moment and smiled.
"Um, I am. But... thank you anyway."
Whew. He was quick.
I watched him gather up my bags and head towards the door.
And, of course, as we made our way out to my car in the pouring rain, he nonchalantly looked me up and down and,
I promise you,
said to me,
"You seem like an educated woman- a woman that knows her mind. Do you mind if I ask you what you studied during your undergraduate education?"
I paused, realizing he had noticed my university stickers on the back of my car.
Man, this kid was king of the context clues.
"Well, I majored in international studies," I told him. "But now I'm back in school studying psychology."
He stood there for a moment,
the rain drops gathering on his nose
and his skinny hands clutching the cart.
"Wow. That sounds like absolutely fascinating work. That's probably why you like to buy all of those organic things, huh? I hear it helps the brain AND it helps populations overseas. Good work, ma'am. Good work."
And then he pulled a 180 with his cart and galloped back into the store.
Best bag boy ever.