First things first… I purposely used that 17th-Century term “eximious” because I love words and sometimes I like to pretend that I’m smarter than I actually am.
Eximious = outstanding, exceptional
And today, that’s exactly how I feel about the Sprouts Farmer’s Market near me.
I can be a complainer, but not just any ordinary complainer. On the wrong day, at the wrong time, when crossed by the wrong set of circumstances, I can go off.
Not violently or anything like that, but with carefully crafted words.
I’m guilty of being able to use my words to tear people down and make them not-so-great.
I don’t admit this with a sense of pride or accomplishment. It’s a part of me I am working on changing. I want to learn to use the power of “my way with words” for good and not for bad.
About three years ago, I bought a 5-year journal because I thought the idea of being able to look at my past in one place would be great.
I’ve kept journals for many years now, but each year has its own book and when the year ends, I close that book and hardly ever look back.
… Don’t worry, I do intend to talk about Sprouts, I’m just giving some background about the seemingly randomness of this post first.
So almost a year ago, I decided to make my 5-year journal a gratitude journal, especially because there’s really only enough room for about two sentences (maybe three if I write in very tiny letters). And it’s been a good thing.
Forcing myself to find something to be grateful for everyday has been quite a challenge on some days but it’s never been impossible.
Some days I can only eek out a one-liner, but on most days, I find myself having so much to report that I’m grateful for, I end up writing between the lines and spilling over into the “airspace” of the next year’s entry.
So that’s what this is all about… Today, I am grateful for the Sprouts Farmers Market near me.
Why? Well, here’s what happened…
Yesterday I went shopping there and wandered over to the bulk foods section… I was actually looking for some plantain chips but instead I heard the milk chocolate-covered almonds calling me.
I didn’t want to be rude to them, especially since I had been “stood-up” by the plantain chips (no plantain chips were anywhere to be found), so I invited the chocolate-covered almonds to go back home with me and keep me company while I made dinner in anticipation of my Sunday night TV lineup.
Now, chocolate-covered almonds are not a poor person’s snack… Weighing in at $8.99/lb I had to be respectful of my wallet and invite just a handful, literally, back home with me.
And boy, did that handful of milk chocolate-covered almonds and I have a good time… It was such a good time for me, they didn’t live to tell the story…
Now, yesterday was also my bill paying day for the month. It’s not always a fun time but I’m grateful that I can pay my bills.
As I was sifting through the mail, sorting out the bills from the junk mail, I saw the Sprouts weekly ad insert. I decided to peruse it in case I saw something good that would be on sale this week, and that’s when my eyes fell upon it…
I double-checked my receipt and discovered that I hadn’t been given the advertised sale price… I paid more than I should have… The horror!
If I was back in my “call the store, ask for the manager, and then give him or her an earful of “stern words”“ days I would have handled things a lot differently. But no, I am practicing using my words for good, so… I had a new plan.
I gathered all my evidence i.e. my receipt and the weekly ad insert (the chocolate-covered almonds themselves were no more…) and resolved to go to the store the very next day, i.e. today, and rationally present my case.
And that’s exactly what I did…
So here’s the best part…
The lady whom I approached for help decided to handle the issue herself. I don’t know if she was a store manager or not, Janet was her name and that’s all I could tell.
Janet looked at the ad, looked at my receipt, looked back at the ad and then went to the closest register we were standing next to. She looked up something in a Sprouts manual-type book, logged in to the register, punched in some numbers and then asked if I had the card I put the charge on or if I had used a debit card.
She immediately processed the refund and credited me the full amount.
Next, I waited for her to process the chocolaty delights that I’d already devoured and let me know what the new cost would be. Instead she looked at me and smiled, handed me my original receipt and the newly-generated refund receipt, then said “have a nice day!”
That’s right… She didn’t charge me anything for the milk chocolate-covered almonds!
I ended up getting them for FREE!
My first thought was “oh men… I should have bought more yesterday!!!”, but my immediate next thought was “Wow…!!”
I know that getting free stuff is not a big deal in the grand scheme of life, and in this case it wasn’t. What was a big deal to me was the gesture Janet showed me.
No argument… No looking down on me for coming all the way back to the store to ask for what probably amounted to something in the neighborhood of a few dollars… No making me feel like I was being petty for pointing out an error…
THAT is what meant a lot to me and thus, warranted the use of the word eximious 🙂
Thank you Janet and thank you Sprouts. You’re my reason for gratitude today.