Wanda Can’t Leave.Posted: January 28, 2011
Remember that movie, The Terminal, where passport issues force Tom Hanks to live in an airport terminal? Naturally he ends up dating Catherine Zeta-Jones, because lots of women like the kind of guy whose love life focuses on having dates in airports. Yeah, I didn’t see the movie either, but do you remember it?
I think I know where there is someone in a similar situation. No, this person is not dating Catherine Zeta-Jones. As best I can tell, the person I’m talking about lives in a local supermarket.
She Is There Everyday
I cannot remember the last time I was at this supermarket and the woman I’m talking about was not there. She is there when I go during the day. She is there when I go at night. When I drive by on my way to other stores, I see her arranging displays near the doorway. Weekends, weekdays, it doesn’t matter. She is there.
Let’s call this woman Wanda, because that isn’t her name. If I got up from typing this and drove to the store right now, Wanda would be there working. Yes, she works there, but this is something more than someone who works a lot. It is impossible to catch her not there. I think she lives in the store.
That Has To Suck.
Let’s face it, we all like to go home from work. There is a certain something about seeing the office in the rear view mirror. Wanda never ever gets that feeling of relief that the rest of us enjoy. When she gets off work she goes back into some living space she has carved out somewhere in the store. She’s still within those walls.
Wanda’s problem is worse than just not being able to get away from the store. All the store’s employees know she’s in the building. She is never out of the loop, never inaccessible to the employees. If something happens, everyone knows they can go back and roust Wanda from her relaxing evening at not home. This is sort of like when your office has your cell phone number…except worse.
So Wanda’s availability to help in every crisis in the store accounts for me seeing her no matter what time of day or day of the week I stop in to pick up some celery. Poor Wanda.
That Has To Suck, But Not Completely.
Not being allowed to leave work, ever, is not something I would hope for. All the same, I think there have to be some real perks to it, even without dating Ms. Zeta-Jones.
Snow has been battering the US this winter, closing schools and businesses all over. Wanda never worries about if the weather is too bad to get to work, or about having a weather related collision in her car. Good weather or bad, Wanda’s commute is literally moments long. No scraping icy windshields. No hot car seats in the summer. Wanda walks out the stock room doors and she is on time for work.
Most of us have experienced the frustration of realizing half way through preparing a dish that we are missing a critical ingredient. Wanda has likely forgotten what that frustration is like. If she realizes she is missing garlic, or marshmallow fluff, or asparagus, a ready supply is literally steps away. Wanda lives in a pantry that exceeds those in the finest professional kitchens. Her dinner parties are never ruined by last minute missing ingredients for her main dish.
I will concede that if she is making a dish that contains garlic, marshmallow fluff and asparagus, Wanda’s dinner party will be one of those events people talk about for all the wrong reasons.
The Weekend Is Here
Some people, like Wanda, never leave work behind. I’m not like Wanda anymore.
I am grateful to have people in my life who’ve taught me the value of not being like Wanda. It is the weekend, so I’m going to go hang out with them. I actually have a whole weekend off. I’m going to relax and enjoy myself. I encourage you to do the same.
Oh, and if you run into Catherine Zeta-Jones, she apparently likes the smell of the soap in those dispensers in the men’s room down at the airport. Who knew?
Good luck to you.