Drive-by Balloon Purchases

During the past weeks, I’d lost five balloons to the heat and humidity. For a while, the stores stopped selling them, or didn’t sell as many. On July 22nd, I had my dental surgery. Since then, I’ve packed on five Mylar balloons. No, make that seven. Definitely seven. One was a present for a job well done. Another was a sleeper I bought at Giant. Three were hallway rescues, that is, lone balloons looking for a home. They’ll make great sleepers, too. Two others were drive-by balloon purchases. Drive-by, meaning I park the car near the store, run inside to buy one item, then back to the car. Except that something else accompanies me on the way to the car.

Every two weeks, I prepare meals for the Aid For Friends, but this time, I ran short on chicken patties. So I stopped by the Acme, realizing a buy-one-get-one-free sale. Trouble was, a horde of Mylar birds perched by the door. I had to get past them to get to my chicken. One of them flew after me and landed on my shoulder, singing “Bye Bye Birdie.”
I haven’t owned a Mylar bird in years. I do now.
Four days ago, I got a five dollar coupon for CVS. Thought I’d do a drive-by and get a pediatric toothbrush for my sensitive gums. I had trouble deciding which toothbrush to get, and my indecision cost me. I didn’t expect the corral of balloons to sit idle while I pussyfooted around the toothbrushes, did I?

Last Christmas, I did a drive-by to pick up refreshments for a party. Ditto balloon purchase.

Lately, these drive-by purchases have yielded more balloons than leisurely shopping with a big grocery list. Let’s say I’m on the road and thinking about getting a sandwich. Before I stop anywhere, I have to ask myself if the store sells balloons. If I don’t, something might accompany that sandwich. Tomorrow I’m heading to CVS to pick up Mike’s medicine. I’ve got a coupon, too. Oh, boy. I’d better look out.

I said I’d lost five balloons before I had the dental work. But I sure as heck found them!

This Mylar balloon belongs to Barbara Custer, author of zombie fiction.

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