Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Crime Scene

This weekend, Kathleen had a friend from school come for a sleep-over. We had never had this particular girl over before, but all was going fine. In fact, I was looking forward to sleeping in a little on Saturday before going into work at 11:00. Finally an opportunity to take it easy . . . maybe Keith could take me out to a little breakfast, too!

We were both startled out of dead sleep at 7:30 Saturday morning by a big crashing sound and a blood-curdling scream.

Side note: When you are a mother of seven, you learn over the course of time, that usually only one parent is needed for most emergencies and that blood curdling screams can be as serious as blood-spurting injuries or as mundane as seeing a big spider.

So, I let Keith go off to check out the screamer while I turned back over in bed to go back to sleep. I heard gentle voices and movements in the kitchen and decided that I would not be needed.

Keith came in a few minutes later.

"She got cut."


"Yeah, stitches. Big gash on her foot."

So, it was a two-parent deal after all. I dragged myself out of a nice comfy bed and went to investigate, still not sure exactly who the victim was, and really hoping it wasn't our sleep-over guest. I stopped trying to compose reasonable explanations in my head to Kayla's mother when I saw Kathleen laying on the floor, her head cradled in Kayla's lap and her foot nicely bandaged up. She looked okay, though, but blood was puddled all over the kitchen floor like it was a crime scene.

"What happened?!" I asked incredulously.

Keith explained, as he fit a tall lethal shard of glass back into a big glass to determine whether or not there were any other pieces, "They were trying to make hot cocoa."

"And you filled the glass with BOILING water?"

"We didn't know!" Kathleen protested from the floor.

"She's got burns, too," Keith said, indicating Kathleen's thigh.

So, as Keith is the designated wound-treatment parent and I am the designated emergency room parent, I got dressed and gathered up everything I needed to take Kathleen to urgent care. First, I called to find out urgent care hours; we still had another hour before it opened. Then, I put together a crochet project, my jacket, and a blanket for Kathleen who was still in pajamas. Another trip to urgent care. How many did that make this year for us? Would we see Dr. Bergen again? (He looks like Uncle Marvin -- which cracks me up, since our pediatrician looks like my brother Danny.)

Anyway, we took ourselves off. Kathleen was brave, as all the kids always are while stitches are being put in. We were both a little green, though, at the sight of the gash in her foot. It was pretty disgusting, even by Johnson standards. We got a collection of burn ointment and bandages from the doctor and then we were done. She got the okay to sing in the Christmas program that night, she'd be able to take a shower by the next day, and she was to come back in 11 days for stitch removal.

Another crisis completed!

Keith met me at McDonald's afterward with my Target work clothes. We did the exchange -- bandaged and stitched kid for red shirt and khakis -- and I went off to work with no further incident that day.

The next incident, though, happened to me the next day when I was called in for some extra hours at Target on Sunday afternoon. The Sunday afternoon in which I was planning to take a nap and get caught up on a little rest since the Saturday morning plan had been so rudely interrupted. Still, after much negotiation with Keith who was suddenly thrust into the designated taxi parent, I made my way to work.

All was going fine. I was keeping my register speed up well over acceptable levels. Time was going by quickly, when I got one customer with a big purchase. She decided to pay $300 in cash and the rest on her credit card. However, when there's a big purchase on a credit card, the register computer asks the cashier to input the last four digits of the credit card being used, as a precautionary method. Well this was all fine and good, but the customer couldn't' find her credit card. She looked everywhere for it, while I continued to stand there holding the $300 cash. (The register won't open until the purchase is completely paid for -- Purchase isn't completely paid for until I input the last four digits . . . ) We were at an impasse. So, to keep the $300 safe, I rolled it up and put it in my back pocket while I went around the counter to the other side to help the customer look for her credit card. Maybe it had fallen in the bags. I didn't even THINK how bad that looked! (Don't mind me, just the cashier stuffing a wad of money in my pocket!)

When one of the managers came to help me with the trouble over not finding the card, she canceled payment and out popped the credit card from the key pad where she had put her credit card in to begin with. Normally, the credit card is shot out after the initial transaction, but this time it had been in the machine all along while we had both been frantically looking for it! So, with the manager still there, I pulled out the $300 and she asked me why I had it in my pocket! I explained to her and she told me to NEVER put cash register money in my pocket, that it looked bad. And sure enough, even as I pulled out the $300, out came a five dollar bill that I had had in my back pocket, too. It was folded weird, so I knew it was mine, but even as I put in the $300, I was stuffing my $5 back in my pocket, and thinking that, yes indeed, that looked VERY bad in front of the security camera!

I was SHAKING, I was so upset about this little turn of events. The manager said nothing more about it, but the more I thought about it, the more I thought that I better make sure that I protected myself. So I called the manager over and told her that I needed to report what had happened so that if someone looked at the incident on camera later, they'd know that I had not been trying to steal the money.

At first, the higher-up manager that talked with me was not very happy, not understanding what I had been doing, but as she heard the whole story, she understood my motivation in trying to keep the money safe and gave me another way to handle the money should another situation come up like that. Then, she said that she had done something BIG stupid yesterday and understood how I was feeling . . . that made me feel a lot better . . . mostly because I could see that she was trusting what I was saying.

When I went in to work yesterday, nothing further was said about it, so apparently the cash drawer was balanced and all is well again.

I have a few hours before I go into work today. I only work a four hour shift, though. It's been working to about 30 hours a week. I'd rather have 40, but 30 is definitely better than nothing. I can't believe the time is going by so fast. December is nearly halfway over. Before I know it, January will be upon us as well as a shift in work. From retail to education . . . Oh, boy!


Qtpies7 said...

Whoa! What a time you are having! Glad it all worked out so well, though.

Mary Blaustone said...

I just did some Christmas shopping at Target yesterday, so I felt like I was right there with you while reading this. Your stories warm my heart and make me laugh.