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A long time ago, I was a child. (I started out as Cathy First from Colon, Mi.) For the past several years I’ve been an adult. A lot of things went on between those two stages of life; probably no more or no less than anyone elses. My husband and I moved to “da U .P” from southern Lower Michigan several years ago (yes we were trolls at one time). We owned and operated and operate Clementz’s Northcountry Campground and Cabins just north of Newberry, Michigan until May 2015. We have grown kids and grandkids (who all live downstate). My passion is life and all that Nature has to offer us and trying to photograph it in unique ways. Our intention in life is to see all that Nature has to offer us. We hope that you will be a part of our adventures as we cruise through our lives together. Come back often!

Sunday, November 19, 2006


I am so glad that is over with! The “shopping experience” I mean.

We went to the Soo yesterday (for those not familiar with that term, it means “Sault, pronounced Soo, Sainte Marie, Michigan”). After all, that rifle money was needing to be put back into the econmy!

First, we went to TSC and found Dan a pair of boots. There didn’t appear to be that many people in the store, but by the time we got to the check out, we were about 5th in line and the first person in line was having some kind of “issues”…so ya know how that goes. We looked behind us about 4 minutes later and there was a line of about 15 behind us! ONE CHECKER!!! No one was moving.

We finally got out of there and drove across to Wal-Mart. The parking lot didn’t look too bad. We didn’t have any trouble finding a place to park within a days walk distance. Outside the store, there was a group of teens, with a tent, and lawn chairs. They looked like they had come to stay; little Coleman stoves, thermos’s of who knows what…and Dan and I could only imagine they were waiting for the arrival of the new Play Station. When we got inside the store, there was a BIG sign stating “ANYONE WAITING FOR THE SHIPMENT OF PLAY STATION; THE LINE FORMS OUTSIDE BY THE GARDEN CENTER!”

There were two shopping carts within sight; that was the first clue. As I’ve told ya, I do not like shopping so with my list in hand we took off towards the shoe center. I needed new boots yet. IT WAS STANDING ROOM ONLY BACK THERE! What I mean is, there were NO little benches available to sit down on to try on footwear. I had Dan prop the cart so it wouldn’t scuttle out from under me, I had to lean on it while I balanced on one foot to get my shoe off and get a boot on. That boot felt pretty good; let’s try the other one. The fella that had been sitting on the bench in this aisle FINALLY got up and left (his wife came looking for him). He hadn’t even been trying on shoes! He was just taking up space and waiting for his wife! Talk about a rude customer! Stuff like that irritates me, particularly when he SAW what I was going through to try to get this boot on!

OK, the box of the boots is in the cart, on to find the rest of the items. I found the large mixer that I wanted; there were three of them. One was a pretty cranberry color so of course, that was the one I wanted! And of course, it was wedged behind a support post and between two other boxes ON THE TOP SHELF. Even Dan couldn’t “unbudge” it. While Dan is trying to get this box out, some woman runs into the back of Dan’s foot with her cart…and we WERE the only people in the aisle! Not even an “I’m sorry!”…she just kept on going after making sure to strike him in the lower back with the top of the cart. I ended up with the white mixer.

Off to find the toaster; found it….the ONLY one left! No problems getting it!
Only one style of breadmaker and it wasn’t the one I wanted so that stayed at the store. Couldn’t find a veggie chopper. There were so many people in that section of the store, you’d think it was close to Christmas or something! With the exception of the “mixer aisle” the whole store was packed!

We picked up a few more odds and ends and tried to find the quickest check out line; yeah, right.

It finally was our turn to unburden the cart! YES!!!! Soon, we’ll be out of this mess!!! Again, yeah, right. The guy in front of us had credit card problems and wanted to find out WHY RIGHT NOW! THAT took some time. Finally, our stuff was rolling down the belt! It was all checked out and put back in the cart (we had some good size boxes so Dan had to put things in there “just so” so it would all fit in ONE cart). The checker says “That will be $305.97, please.” I said “I think you made a mistake. It can’t be anywhere’s near that much” (By now there is a line behind US and I’m feeling the stares from others waiting in line) The checker, tears off the slip and hands it to me and says “Well, you just check it over then!” I looked and immediately saw two glaring errors. I said “You charged us twice for the $99. mixer AND you charged us for 3 packages of the Chinet plates when there are only two.” She replied, not quite as huffy this time, “OH!!! I didn’t hear those ring up so I ran them through again! I will be happy to take that off but I need you to give me back those items so I can scan them to make the adjustment!” As I said, Dan had everything loaded & balanced in the cart and had to take it all out again. By now, the mob following us sounds like they are ready to revolt, but I don’t really care!

We finally got out to the car, unloaded the cart and fell into our seats. We both gave shudders at the same time; each of us thinking ‘I AM SO GLAD THAT IS OVER!’ I cannot imagine what it will be like the day after Thanksgiving! It makes people like me glad for online shopping!

I’ve got money left over, but my shopping WILL be done online!

I do want to recommend a restaurant to you. Dan and I had lunch at Abner’s and it was excellent. We could have had the brunch buffet (which looked VERY appealing) but ordered off the menu. The sandwiches are HUGE and you also get a LARGE portion of fries and a bit of coleslaw. And the prices are very fair for the amount of food you get! And it is right on the snowmobile trail!

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