I had some final shopping to do before Thanksgiving.  I also wanted to be sure I picked up a couple of the super bargain frozen turkeys for thirty-nine cents per pound.  What a deal!   So it was off to Hannaford for the specials.

The bin with the frozen turkeys made me realize how bad my arthritis in my fingers is.  I could not pick up the turkeys.  A very nice lady helped me, for which I thanked her profusely.  Another kind lady pointed out that I had dropped something from my pocketbook.  A tootsie pop.  God knows how long it’s been in the side pocket of my purse, but I like to be prepared for the possibility of breaking down in a snowstorm and having a tootsie pop in my purse to keep me from dying before I’m rescued.  OK, so I don’t go out if it’s snowing, but still.

Anyway, got the specials in my cart and checked out.  The wind practically blew me out of the parking lot, but finally I had the car loaded and headed next to Walmart, for the antihistamines that keep my dizziness more or less at bay.  Walking to the store, I see something out of the corner of my left eye, and reach up to my glasses to see if there is something there.  Yup.  I feel something.  So I pull off the glasses and realize it is the screw to the frame that holds the lens in place.  It’s backed out almost all the way.  I hold the glasses cupped in my hand and go into the store and immediately head for the Optical department.

Luckily they were not busy, so I approached the two clerks and asked, “is it possibly you could help me with my glasses?  The screw has backed out.”    One of them holds out her hand and I deposit the glasses.  She said, “Do you have the lens?”     WHAT??????   I couldn’t believe I didn’t notice the lens was now missing!  Crap.  Panic.  I see dollar signs flashing before my eyes.  I told them I never noticed the lens was gone and I must have dropped it on the way into the store.  So she said she’d hang onto my glasses while I went to look for it.

I retrace my steps back to my car.  Nothing.  Checked inside the car, just in case it had fallen out inside.  Nothing.  Retrace my steps yet again, all the way back inside and to the optical shop.  I told them I had not found the lens and she said she would tighten the screw for me so they at least stayed together.  I took my one-lensed glasses and left, after first stopping in at customer service to leave my name and number in case someone turned in the missing lens.

I decided I’d better snap it up and go back to Hannaford, on the off chance that the lens might be found somewhere in the store.   I parked next to my original space and searched the ground.  Nothing.  Retraced my steps back into the store, which is totally packed, by the way.  I keep thinking that even if I did find the lens, what were the odds that it would have been either stepped on or run over by now?

Retracing steps when my original trip had included several round-about searches for various items was not easy.  But I tried my best.  I then remembered having dropped the tootsie pop at the turkey bin and thought, if I dropped that, then maybe that is where the lens also fell out.  So back to the turkey bin I go, first trying to search among the gobblers.  Again, trying to move the frozen birds was not easy on my hands, but I did the best I could and didn’t see the lens.  I turned to continue retracing my steps over the remainder of the store, all the while with my eyes glued to the floor.

And I saw it.  My lens sitting just a few feet from the turkey bin, on the floor.  Just then another customer wheeled his wagon over the left edge of it!   “AAAARRGGHHH!” I said, causing the man with the carriage to stop and look at me.  “Oh my God, my lens!” I cried, and swooped down to pick it up.  The man laughed and said “wow, that was lucky!”   I said “don’t I know it!  Thank you, God!”  I couldn’t believe it was not broken.

So back to Walmart and the optical department.  Same two clerks.  They looked up at me, probably thinking “you again?”  and I said, “are you ready for an early Christmas miracle?”  I opened my hand to show them the lens.  I told them the story as one of them repaired the glasses for me.  What a relief.

The moral of this story is perhaps twofold.  One, miracles do happen.  Two, never keep your outside glasses so clean that you can’t tell if the lens is missing.  Had this happened to my inside glasses, the lack of smudges and fingerprints would have immediately alerted me to the fact that the lens was missing.  🙂


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