At the store entrance, high schoolers were handing out little flyers with a list of non-perishable food items they were collecting for a local Thanksgiving food drive. There were maybe 15 items on the list (flour, sugar, chicken broth, cream of mushroom soup, stuffing mix, canned yams, instant mashed potatoes, pie filling, etc). Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday, and it felt really good to be able to do something for those less fortunate that us. I mean, I know we're not in great shape financially but a can of soup costs, what? 75¢? So Stephen and I went about the store, filling our cart with those Thanksgiving items. And it was good seeing other people do the same. For once, I felt a part of some larger "community." A "community" in the full sense of the word.
At the check-out counter, the cashier asked if the items I bought were for the collection drive.
"Yes," I said. "Everything but the soda."
She smiled. And then pressed a discount key on the register, knocking off maybe three dollars from the total bill, which came to about $17 dollars. And I was happy-- it seemed liked $17 dollars well spent.
When we got home, Alison asked what took us so long.
I told her about the food drive, how we were racing through the store colleting items that were on the list.
Alison looked at me, scrunching her brows as if I was the biggest fool on the planet.
"I like Thanksgiving," I said, cracking open one of the soda bottles. "It's my favorite holiday."
She crossed her arms. "Nick, they were collecting food for us. We're on the list of people this year who are getting help this holiday."
Wow. I felt like a total fool.