my summer vacation, part 1: walmart, pink houses and branded body wash

The first day of my vacation was like a duet between John Denver and John Cougar Mellencamp.

We drove down this country road:

Take Me Home Country Road

To get to this slice of Small Town America:

Before walking into the ginormous superstore of WT national acclaim, I had to stop and shoot this photo. Why? Because I had never before set foot inside of a Walmart and I could sense that it was going to be a momentous occasion in my life. How could it possibly be my first time you ask? Well, Target is my one and only love, and I have never needed or wanted to stray. Alas, on this particular day, Walmart was my only option, so I headed in with a mix of trepidation and excitement.

Upon entering the paned, sliding doors to the land of Retail on Crack, I uttered two profound words: Holy. Shit.

Thankfully I had left the kids with Steve so that I could take the moment in with some introspection and serenity. So that I could hear myself clearly say, over and over, Are you kidding me with this place?

I clutched my shopping list firmly in my right hand, knowing that if I did not remain true to my list, I would most certainly spend all the money I had saved for my BlogHer NYC trip still yet to come on frivolous purchases for which I am such a sucker. Like this:

Thankfully for me, 2-in-1 body wash + shampoo was on my list. Booya! In the cart they went, with gusto.

With my new Gabby Montez hearts Troy Bolton personal hygiene products nestled neatly in the shopping cart, I slowly but surely made my way through the store, stopping to ask every single clerk I passed where I could find the next item on my list. Otherwise, I can guarantee that I would still be there. As I perused the shelves stocked with every product known to man, I began to twitch a little at the value pack of 80’s candy flavored Lip Smackers (you can never have too many scented chapsticks or lip glosses) and then salivated down the row of snack packs and cheddar bunnies. Yet I survived the temptations and stayed true to my list. I am woman on a tight budget, hear me roar.

At the checkout stand I was greeted, or actually not greeted at all, by an apparent mute who missed her On-The-Job Training session on customer service. I would never have known that she had finished ringing me up, partly because I was busy snapping this photo of the Jetsons-like, high-tech bagging contraption,

but also because she honestly uttered not a word, except for the loud cough she emitted to let me know my total was on the screen in front of me.

Once reunited with my family inside the Subway inside the Walmart I couldn’t wait to show Lily and Lexi what I had purchased for them. And this, dear readers, is why I’m a sucker for thematically branded body wash.


To close out the night, we ate dinner at a BBQ joint called Red, Hot & Blue, no lie, and then attended a band competition at George Mason college where my teen half-brother-in-law was performing. It was Drumline meets Waiting For Guffman. The highlight was a performance by the U.S. Marine Drum & Bugle Corps.

Ain’t that America, Home of the Free. Little pink houses for you and me.

To Be Continued…Next stop, The City That Never Sleeps, a BlogHer ’10 Recap.



  1. 1
    Crista Ghironi Williams says:

    Your Walmart story is hilarious. I too had a similar first visit. I still much prefer Target……

  2. 2
    Mary says:

    Target is heaven on earth!

  3. 3
    Lisa Voss says:

    If you did crack and buy the Lip Smackers, they make a great stocking stuffer for Lily. Tatum gets some of those every year. Love the new blog…looks great! Can’t wait to hear about your time with Mern.

  4. 4
    Ooph says:

    I have been in a Walmart exactly ONE time. It was last year the day after Thanksgiving. Even at 5:30 a.m. I was amazed. That is the biggest fucking place I have ever seen in my life. And? It had a McDonalds in it. Of course it did.

  5. 5
    Tracey says:

    I have been twice and hope to never go again. I love Target!!!

  6. 6
    Mary says:

    I’m having Target withdrawls as I type this. xo

  7. 7
    Laura says:

    I really wanted to see the video of the girls, but it won’t load for me… boohoo

    AND – I really can’t believe you’ve never been in WalMart before!

  8. 8
    Laura F says:

    … when I lived in New Mexico, Walmart was the only place near my house to grocery shop. I hated it. Hated it. Hated it. The worst was when I had to make a late night run for cough syrup or something. Then you see all the trashy people with their crying babies eating a bag of doritos, awake at 10:00 at night, while the tattood – riped clothes wearing – downright scary parents do their junk-food shopping. Can you tell I am traumatized??

  9. 9

    Thanks for finally talking about > my summer vacation, part 1: walmart,
    pink houses and branded body wash | The Mama Mary Show < Liked it!

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