Yesterday, we had our usual bi-monthly trip to Costco for groceries.
And I don’t know what it is about that place, but I always leave with a smile on my face and a beaming heart.
Yesterday, I had three reasons for this…..
1) The Little Girl
At the end of the trip, we got in line to pay for our items and a cute little girl about 3 years old was in a line next to us.
She immediately spotted the Bubbers king seated in his throne, surrounded by his various food subjects.
And boy oh boy, did she like him!
“Baby!! BABY!!!! BAAAAAAAAAAAAABYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” she yelled across the cement expanse separating her and the Little Man.
Bubbers completely ignored her and pounded on the container of spinach next to him.
“Hi Baby!! Hiiii Baby!!! HIIIIIIIIII BAAAAAAAABYYYYYYYYYYY!!!” she tried again.
Still, the Bubbers king was oblivious to his adoring princess.
Her mother tried to help, “You need to wave to him. He doesn’t know you’re talking to him.”
“HIIIIIIIIIIIII BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!” she operatically sang with vigorous waving.
Bubbers sucked in his lower lip and puffed out his cheeks, staring up at the ceiling without as much as an eye flicker in her direction.
Completely laughing outloud, I intervened to get his attention and direct it towards the little blond girl practically climbing out of her cart in a vain effort to get so much as a glance from his royal Bubberness.
He finally looked at her.
“BAAAAAABYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!! Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Baaaaaaaaaaaaabyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!” she exploded as she finally locked eyes with him.
With a single eyebrow raised, Bubbers looked at her like she was a space alien from Mars.
She could barely contain her excitement and continued to call to him until we were out of sight.
2. The Grandpa
After we paid for our food, a sweet elderly man stopped us.
“Boy, he’s a cutie-patutie!” he said, smiling at Bubbers.
“Say thank you!” I said, poking the Little Man in his ample abdomen.
Bubbers ignored me and grabbed the receipt from my hand.
“How old is he?” the man asked.
“Nine months,” I answered.
The man kept smiling and we had a delightful conversation about his grandchildren.
He pulled their pictures out of his wallet and showed them to me.
“My grand daughter stayed over last night and this morning, she put her hands on my cheeks and said, ‘Ba-ba, I love you. You’re my best friend!'” he said, joy radiating from his face.
“Aww!!” I smiled, completely touched.
“Talk about melting my heart!” he said and we smiled at each other.
Then he told me the secret to keeping children from growing tall and I was all ears!
“Don’t put the cookies on the top shelf,” he advised, “Or they do this,” and he reached his arms way up high.
It took a moment to understand his joke and then I laughed heartily.
“Keep them down low,” he smiled with a twinkle in his eye and reached down low to make his point.
I laughed again and promised to follow his advice.
We talked a little more and eventually said goodbye.
3. The Great-Grandparents
At the beginning of our shopping trip, I took Bubbers to the fruit section.
“When you pick out bananas,” I explained, “You want ones that don’t have any black on them because that means they’re bruised.”
He understood completely.
I searched through the bananas and didn’t notice an elderly man standing nearby, listening to us.
He chuckled, “So you’re teaching him how to pick out bananas, huh?”
I smiled, “That’s right!”
The man walked over and smiled at Bubbers.
“It’s amazing how fast they learn,” he mused.
“It sure is,” I agreed.
Then his wife joined him and she smiled at Bubbers.
“How old is he?” she asked.
“Nine months,” I answered.
“Aww,” she said and looked at her husband, “Just like one of our great-grandchildren.”
Then she asked, “Does he like stickers?” and magically pulled a sheet of stickers out of her purse.
“Why, yes, he does!” I answered with a smile.
She pulled off a sticker and put it on Bubbers’ hand.
“Say thank you!” I said and lovingly stroked the Little Man’s hair.
The couple told me about their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren with faces that shone with pride.
We parted and I smiled down at Bubbers.
He was very grateful for the sticker.
And I was very grateful for Costco.