Before I begin, to all 17 of my followers I would like to apologize for my hiatus. What have I been doing since August of 2011, you ask? Well, I have been quite busy. I was working and living in Tulsa, Oklahoma but then I met a wonderful man and decided to make a few changes to be closer to him. Now, I'm living in DFW, Texas working on a completely new career path and loving life. Actually, it was my sweet boyfriends encouragement that prompted me to start blogging again. You can either thank him or curse him after you read my story...
Today is Monday and I had been trying all weekend to find an opportunity to tell you all my next story. It apparently wasn't in the cards... or the schedule because I just never could find the time. Now the weekend is over and I should be at work right now but it seems fate would have me tell my story after all. It even went as far as to create a "Story of Abby" moment for me to be able to stay home and tell you my "Story of Abby" story. (This morning I went to get in my car to go to work and the battery was dead. I had no other way to get to work so naturally I called in. And that leads me to the present, and my next blogging installment.) It really is funny how things work out...
I'm excited about telling you this story because I get to introduce to you another fun character in my life. She has been a great friend to me ever since college and remains a great friend to this day. Her name is Dottie.
|Dottie (left) and Abby at the Tulsa Zoo|
One of the best things about a friend like Dottie is that when ridiculous things happen we can laugh forever about them... like until my face hurts. Things never stop being funny. Whether we're cracking up at my drunk neighbors singing sad country songs while trying to make musical instruments with their empty beer bottles or we see someone fall and bust their butt on a slippery bowling alley lane, funny things are 10 times funnier when they happen around Dottie. I'd like to say that this is a story like that... a funny one where I do something stupid and we laugh about it all day. This story is quite different, but a "Story of Abby" story nonetheless.
It all started one day when I was in college. Dottie and I wanted to do something fun so we decided to go to the mall. Unfortunately, there was no mall in the small town where we attended college so we were forced to drive about 30 minutes away into the city of Muskogee, Oklahoma. That's right, "Okie from Muskogee" is about a real place! We had a great time going to thrift stores (we were poor), and to the mall to buy some more hermit crab food for my two hermit crabs, and window shopping the latest fashions. Everything was same old, same old until our day started to come to a close.
We had been driving around for the majority of the day so before we left Muskogee to head back home we decided to stop for gas. Now, I'm not the type to call anyone out so I'm not going to name the gas station chain that this story happened at... but lets just call it "8-Twelve". Dottie was gassing up her car and asked me to go inside and pay. This was back in the good 'ole days when you could fill up your car for under $20 so that's what I took in with me, a $20 bill. As I'm walking into the store I'm not thinking anything crazy is about to happen. In fact, I'm almost certain the only thing on my mind was whether I wanted Twizzlers or Reese's Peanut Butter Cups (yum!) for the ride home. But as soon as I walked in and saw the cashier, food was the last thing on my mind.
He was a middle-aged man who had long, scraggly hair, was terribly thin and is best described as Iggy Pop's twin brother.
The crazy thing is his appearance wasn't the thing that frightened me. It was the fact that he was bleeding... profusely from his hand and wrist! I'm not talking about a little bit of red running down his arm. Nearly his entire forearm, from his hand to his elbow, was covered in blood.
I stopped dead and stared at him as he frantically searched the area behind the counter for something to stop the bleeding. I'm not sure at what point he even noticed I had come into the store but it was probably about the time I regained my composure and asked him, "Are you okay?!" His head popped up and he looked at me nervously, not answering my question. So I asked him again, "Sir, are you alright?! Do I need to call someone?!" Well, that got his attention. "No!", he practically screamed at me. He turned around quickly and saw a paper towel dispenser behind the counter, looking at it as if he'd never seen it before even though he works there. He began pumping paper towels out, smearing blood all over the dispenser as he proceeded to ask me for a favor. "Umm... do you think that you can find me some band-aids out there on the shelf?"
Band-aids?! "Sir, I think you're going to need a lot more than band-aids for that mess! I'm going to call 911."
"No! Please don't! I'm fine really!" he said to me. At that time, he walks wildly to the back of the behind-the-counter area to a sink that is barely visible to me. I hear the water turn on and assume he's washing his hands and arm. He returns shortly with new makeshift bandages covering his injury but at least his other hand is clean now. The cut is so deep, I can already see blood soaking thru the new dressings. He continues, with his arm wrapped in cheap blood-soaked paper towels, like nothing is wrong... "That'll be, uh, $16.34 on pump #3."
I stared cautiously at him as I slipped my $20 over the counter. He's very jumpy as he reaches out, takes my bill and begins to one-handed make my change in the till.
And as if this whole thing isn't already bad enough, he says this to me... "I'm sorry I'm so panicked. I just, uh, I have to be so careful when it comes to my blood. You see, I've got something you cant get rid of." Then he winked at me. I promise on my life, he winked at me. All this with one hand in the till making my $3.66 change and the other raised in the air to slow the bleeding.
I can only image what my face did, but I know what my mouth said. I immediately responded by telling him to keep his bloody (literally) change and I booked it outta there! As I was walking back to Dottie, another customer was about to come in and I stopped him right away. I told him a quick 10 second synopsis of what had just occurred and he quickly turned around, got in his car and left the parking lot almost as fast as Dottie and I did.
Now, I don't know that cashier and I'm not sure what he meant by, "I've got something you can't get rid of." And I don't know how he came to be covered in blood. I can only speculate. You can hate me for judging the guy if you want but I do not regret high-tailing it from that place as fast as I could. After telling Dottie the story in the car, we didn't laugh even once. To this day I don't think we've ever talked about this and laughed.
For days I felt gross, icky, like I needed a shower... and a blood test. I had just had this disgusting encounter with a hopped-up Iggy Pop in a sketchy convenience store in Muskogee, Oklahoma and it was all I could think about. It wasn't until a few days later that I realized I never even got my Twizzlers and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups :o(
This is the kinda thing that could only happen to me. It's the story of my life... it's the Story of Abby.