I often walk to and from the grocery store. This can be a challenge when my brain gets so involved in buying things and getting good deals that it forgets I have to WALK HOME with all my buys. The store isn't far (three blocks over and three blocks down), but when you are toting bags full of food and laundry detergent, it's a long and tiresome walk.
Yesterday, there was a $1 sale going on. $1 for some awesome stuff. I had to go shopping. Taking a tip from my neighbor, I decided to take my three regular reusable bags plus a backpack. Why carry weight in your arms when you can carry it on your back? I had never taken a backpack before but thought that yesterday was the day to bring out the big guns. This particular backpack is an old one of Keith's. It is definitely a boy's backpack, with multiple pockets, zippers, straps, and buckles. I felt a little awkward wearing it to the store, as it is so bulky and big that it felt like it was wearing me.
I had a great time shopping. I bought 39 items for $63 (a block of cheese and jar of honey threw off a better total), and I will get $5 back in rebates. Not too shabby. I pulled out my bags and started packing. I stuffed the backpack full of heavy bottled, canned, and cold items, used a bag for boxes (cake mixes for a $1? You bet! Especially when the regular price is $3), another bag for items sold in bags (off-brand cereal and snacks), and the third for produce. I slung my backpack on my back, threw the bags in my arms, and headed out.
I had only taken a few steps when I realized there was a flaw in my thinking. Because of the straps on the backpack, I was unable to put my grocery bags on my shoulders. These bags were too heavy to carry all three in my arms, so I needed to do something. I stopped and put down my backpack. Looking it over, I found a buckled strap on the side, used to expand the body. I opened it and clipped one of my grocery bags in. I swung the backpack back up and started walking again, only now I had two bags in my arms and one swinging from the backpack behind me. It was working.
I went about a block and a half before I decided I needed to make another change. The produce bag was so heavy, that I couldn't hold it plus the other bag comfortably. I carefully took off my backpack and gave it another look. There, hidden behind a zippered pocket was a random velcroed strap on the other side. I have no idea what it was intended for, but it was perfect for me. I locked the second bag through the straps and started walking again.
With each step I took I felt more and more ridiculous, and I'm fairly certain I looked ridiculous too. I only had one bag in my hands, with the other two hanging and swinging wildly from the backpack behind me. Step with my right, a bag would hit me in the rump. Take a step with my left, a cake box would jab me in the thigh. Luckily, traffic on the road home was sparse, but I couldn't help thinking what other people were thinking when they saw me: Crazy Lady! I wish I could have taken a picture of myself. What a sight!
By the time I got home, I was exhausted. I have no idea how much my groceries weighed, but after I dropped my backpack and its attachments in the kitchen, I had a hard time walking through to the living room. I felt like I was going to tip over forwards, due to having compensated for the weight of the bags.
Next time I go shopping, I think I'll scrap the backpack and take a large suitcase instead. That way I can just roll my groceries home.