One of our local grocery stores (not one I usually frequent) has sadly gone out of business.
All last week they were selling their entire stock for 30% off. Not too bad, but since their prices were usually high to begin with, I can't say I was overly enthused with the "bargains."
Until this weekend.
Everything in the store was 60% off... AND they still took coupons.
That was all it took for my friend Julie (Call Me Wannabe) and me to "make a date" for an early Saturday morning shopping trip. After a quick stop for a coffee, we made it to the store at 7:45 am.
There was already a line.
We were able to get in pretty quickly, though, and once we did, the deals started flying fast and furious. Huggies diapers? $3.10 (with a coupon). Kraft string cheese? $0.76 (again, with a coupon). I made $0.60 off of each pair of Herbal Essences I picked up (sale price for the pair, $1.40. I had a $2 coupon). I think I was able to get bags of dog food for close to $1.50 or so.
The result of this shopping spree?
Please remember, their prices were HIGH to start with. However, I bought $500 worth of stuff for [drumroll, please!]......
That was exciting enough, but now I need to tell you the rest of the story. One that I thought was just as exciting -- or perhaps more so -- than the actual bargains I got.
The store, as you can imagine, was packed. EVERYONE wanted to take advantage of the sale. Do you remember the horrific story of the man who was trampled to death by rabid WalMart shoppers up in New York?
It was NOTHING like that here.
It was the biggest sale EVER, and all those there were obviously ready to get the best deals possible, and yet everyone was smiling... polite... passing out coupons to help others... stepping aside to let others through... pointing out deals to others, etc.
I was so proud of my community!
We waited in line THREE HOURS to check out (it was a mess. They fixed the problem later, but those of us in line were stuck). Did anyone grumble? Complain? No. Not a single person around me made a single negative comment the entire three hours I was in line. Instead we laughed, swapped stories, watched each others' carts while we took advantage of more bargains on the shelves, and even had a lady make a fast food run for the rest of us in line.
It was the most amazing experience to be surrounded by these people in my community, and I couldn't help but thank God for the whole thing.
I'm hard pressed to say which was the better bargain.