The year ended and began with a giant annoyance. Instead of harboring my irritation, I made several very public announcements via social media. I was fit to be tied and expressed my bad /sad attitude toward the higher ups at Albertsons for making a HUGE mistake. Nothing upsets me more than a slight disruption in my methodical little life.
My extreme displeasure started when I warned that my local, neighborhood, corner store, Tom Thumb, was closing it’s doors. I pitched a big ole fit to anyone and everyone who would lend an ear. I wrote a letter to the executive management at Tom Thumb and Albertson’s begging them to change their mind. Even my clients and social media followers had to endure my public tantrum that went on for at least 5 weeks.
How could they do this to me? To us? WHY?? How could Tom Thumb close a local grocery store leaving the neighborhood natives restless and starving? Would we all just become famished zombies roaming the city before they changed their mind? Was it legal for them to abandon all of the loyal employees and leave them jobless?
This store, this Tom Thumb was sooo much more than just a grocery store to me. This store was my daily heart and ministry. It was about relationships. I had real friendships with the shiney faces of this particular location. We were on a first name basis and exchanged text messages and fb sarcasm. I asked about their kids and their life ! Taking this store away from me was like losing a limb.
Like any other regular, I knew the store like the back of my hand. I had the layout and isles etched in my memory. I knew both pharmacists by name, took interest in the stock boy, the deli man, the check out guys and gals, the store assistant manager YOLANDA and the manager Mr. Carl Anderson were my friends!!!!
I was a hot mess and beside myself. When the final weeks were approaching and store had a banner annoucning the devistating
GOING OUT OF BUSINESS news I lost it. I cried crocodile tears as I watched the store shelves dwindle down to nothing. I coudn’t even bring myself to take advantage of the clearance items or the half off this and half off that… It was just too much for one woman to bare.
Selfish yes! Selfish but true – OH YEAH. From my house to the parking lot was a basic 4-6 minute drive. I could make a huge haul or a quick trip in and out at lightning speed! So, when this location closed its doors officially, I held a vigil and declared it a dead day! I mourned the loss. I grieved for the employees who thankfully were all reassigned positions at various locations. I contemplated switching loyalty and shopping at Kroger or Market Street but I hated the idea of starting from scratch.
At Tom Thumb I have their system for coupon clipping down to a science. I take it seriously. I clip via the Tom Thump app and I rack up the REWARDS. Gas rewards or shopping rewards and I save lots of dollars. Who wants to start over? I’m all about loyalty.
“Angi, what did you do??”
I did what any other like minded grocery store shopper would do, I basically went on grocery store strike. I took a hiatus from shopping. I was depressed and in denial. I basically allowed my pantry and fridge to whittle down to ketchup, baking soda and a few sparce canned goods.
One day, Mr. Chicken Fry had the guts to ask me if we/ I was ever going to buy groceries again. I abhorred the idea of starting a new. Reluctantly, I pulled myself up by the bootstraps and made a decision. With a heavy heart, I drove myself to “THE OTHER” Tom Thumb only two extra minutes away from my house. (yes I mapped it) I pulled into what I consider to be the “worst parking lot in all of Coppell, with a big sigh. URghh…change is so hard!
Walking into this store I was super flustered. One might wonder why I’m so oopposed to this store which was often considered “the better Tom Thumb.” The store is pristine and is super updated. It has all of the amenities like a Starbucks, bank, pharmacy, quest diagnostics and a beautiful floral and produce section.
“Why then Angi all of the fuss??”
Because it’s NOT my corner store and it’s not easy to get in and out of. Because it’s crowded and because I might accidentally see four more people to stop and talk to. Can I get an AMEN from the other introverts and busy people in the house!!!!
The Tom Thumb I loved so dearly had two entry points with big double doors. The big motion sensored doors were often used for quick easy in and out access. The fancy Tom Thumb only has one way in and one way out which isn’t convenient AT ALL when you just need milk or wine or a pharmacy item. It’s a trick, a scam to get you into the store and all the way in the back left corner. (eye roll)
Secondly, I had no idea where anything was because what I came to realize is that it was a complete flip-flop of the store that I had known and grew to cherish. If you are the man or woman who is the grocery buyer you must feel my distress. Somebody feel sorry for me!
The ability to get in and out of the grocery store for me is like a NASCAR race. I’m careful to pick the perfect cart with good mobility in the tires and solid traction to bob and weave my way in and out of the isles making steady progress as I load it down with items. The grocery store is just a means to and end. Get in, get food and get out! I’m not in there to dilly dally and chit chat.
Yall, I gave it my best shot. For three months I grinned and tried to make the best of it. I even introduced myself to the manger and deli lady. Y’all…I tried. I really really tried to get to know the lay of the land and find my way around but after three full months I said to heck with it! I’m not going to be held captive by this tragic problem.
I made peace with it all and now by the GRACE of Jesus, I’m an online shopper. I was already registered at Tom Thumb all I had to do was fill the virtual cart and schedule a pick up or delivery.
My first few delivery experiences were interesting and by interesting I mean I messed up! The shopping is easy but I had to be careful on quantities and sizes. I would see the picture of bananas and I would add it to my virtual cart but only one banana would actually be delivered. Who only buys one banana?
I also had an issue with portion sizes. I love me some cereal and I prefer the family size boxes. I had to start paying attention to this from an onlines shopping perspective.
I prefer the delivery but in a pinch I have used the on site pick up and it’s a breeze. I ordered my groceries and choose a window of time to retrieve the groceries. I parked in the designated parking spots and called the number on the sign. Within minutes my groceries were being carted out and transferred to my car. VOILA!
Here’s the thing the only problem I can find with the delivery / pick up method is you can’t get everything. And buy everything I mean WINE, and certain deli items such as shredded rotisserie chicken and sushi.
So I took this up with my new friend the store manager. When I spoke to the kind gentleman about my concern with the deli products he vowed to help me but after three failed attempts I will not except chicken salad as a rotisserie chicken.
The store manager when I told him I debacle of why I did not like coming into the store and how I missed my old store he said please don’t do grocery delivery we want you in the store so you’ll buy more. I love honesty don’t you so true and honest they want us to come into the store so will buy more point of purchase items more hunger items because we’re hungry when we shop more food that we won’t use.
As these things go, I love the delivery factor and I try and work hard at it. I have my sparkle back!
Each week I go to the Tom Thumb app and I download all of the coupons. I actually click all of them so I leave no chances to miss on savings. Because sometimes I send the teen queen in to do the dirty work. That being said I do everything I can to have a decent experience.
So here’s the question do you think you spend more money or less money when you are in store or out of store?
Mr. Chicken Fry recently brought to my attention that I had stopped buying certain foods since I was not going to the store. I could not deny any of his accusations. NOW we have a family system that works for us! We are now using the Alexa app as our point of command/command central. If you are in our house you could catch any of us at any time yelling at Alexa to add something to the grocery list. This populates whatever item has been added to my phone into a list on the app. When the time comes for me to place and online delivery or pick up, I simply add it to the list! Problem solved Chicken FRY!
Tom Thumb has literally made my day, my year! Guess what? Now, Tom Thumb is offering a subscription based grocery delivery. FREE 30 day trial. Simply visit www.tomthumb.com and sign up. Subscribe and enjoy unlimited deliveries for one low fee. You can choose monthly or annual subscription and it pays for itself. This is the least they can do for breaking my heart. This is the quality and service I have come to expect from my friends at Tom Thumb. Now we’re talking!
Love, stay hungry and healthy
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