December 22, 2009
Today was the last day that Albertson's was issuing bonus stickers for the cookware project Friends of Erin have been working on this fall. I had enough stickers to add four more pots to the nine I had already redeemed, but not enough for a fifth.
I scoured my canvass shopping bags and jacket pockets to make sure I hadn't overlooked any. In fact, I distinctly remembered having ten or twelve stickers that I had tucked somewhere. I finally found them in a pair of corduroy pants that I had just re-hung in the closet after wash day. Unbelievably, they were faded, scrunched up, and not very sticky, but not destroyed. I stuck them in. Still not enough for a fifth pot.
I had a little shopping to do: Cascade, Cheer, some potatoes, and a couple of other items. I went through the check out, got some stickers and hoped for the best. I was still eight stickers ($80 worth) short of another pot, and didn't think that gratuitous shopping to gain stickers was a good idea, so I went to the cookware display, got the four good pots I could afford, and put a smaller, less handy pot in the basket to use up the remainder of my stickers.
Somehow the man in front of me failed the basic test of putting his groceries on the conveyor belt, so the checker mistakenly rang up part of his groceries and totaled them. She rounded up his $48 purchase and handed him five stickers. He looked back at me, saw I was collecting, and handed them over to me. The checker then proceeded to process the rest of his goods. Again it was short of the mark. Again she rounded up. The man handed me three more stickers. We eked out another good pot!
You would have thought I won the lottery. I ran back and traded the little pot for a fourteenth big pot (if you are doing the math, 14 pots = about $10,000 worth of groceries purchased by all of you who helped). Davis and I filled up Rosie's hatch and made the delivery to the Twin City Mission's Transitions program (helps battered women, often with children, and homeless families start new lives).
Thank you all for helping me find yet another way to be inspired by Erin so that I can let her death fill me up rather than emptying me out.