Saturday, February 1, 2014

Fun Fact: The Elbow is an Awesome Weapon

There I was at Walmart again.

I truly hate shopping at Walmart, especially on a Friday, but by the time I decided to get out and get my shopping done, it was eleven o'clock at night, and Target was closed. I needed hem-tape and ink pens, so...Walmart, yippee.

So I went to Walmart on a chilly night, when there doesn't seem to be any kind of strict observation of bedtime. For once, I thought I might try to get a parking spot close to the door, so I started to drive right in front of the store, where the flock of shoppers pour from the doors and make thru-traffic practically impossible. I don't know what I was thinking.

I was commiserating my mistake, when the guy in the car two cars ahead of me abruptly stopped his car and jumped out.

What the HELL? Was he about to run into the store with his car parked right in the middle of the driving lane while the rest of us were trapped there by the stampede of pedestrians and the lack of a tow truck?

But no. He did not go toward the store. Instead, he ran toward a little girl, about five years old, who had lagged behind her family as they made their way toward their car.

He scooped her up!

Right there in front of me, I was witnessing a kidnapping, folks! I jumped out of my car, not really knowing what I would do. The woman in the car directly in front of me was also ready for action. She popped out of her car, and we were about to save that little family from the most frightening thing I could ever imagine.

The adrenaline was pumping through me so quickly, but time seemed to slow right down, to a dull swoosh. I imagine myself making use of all those self-defense lessons I'd taken back when I left the kids' dad. I sized the guy up as I moved forward.

In my mind, I was sweeping the leg, jabbing the eyes, pulling the hair, using the elbow...

The squealing laughter is what stopped me.

The little girl...she was laughing, and when the family turned around saw the perpetrator trying to steal their little girl, they too, began to squeal with laughter and happiness.

They'd found their grandpa.

Or, rather, Grandpa had found them.

It really was quite touching. They hugged and laughed and held a genuine reunion right there in the middle of the Walmart parking lot.

I returned calmly to my car. The woman in front of me, my would-be co-hero, gave me a nod and a smile as she returned to her car. We connected in that moment. Should we ever find ourselves in a situation like that again, we'd have each others' backs.

Kidnappers beware.

For another Walmart experience, visit my friend Juli's blog Surviving Boys here.


  1. One does not simply walk into Wal-Mart. There is evil there that does not sleep. Luckily, that evil did not manifest in the form of a kidnapper.

    1. Once I was inside, the story turned grim. They locked the north doors, which were right next to where I parked my car. :(

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks. I was speechless in the moment. I had to sort it all out in my head later.

  3. Awe!!! I love this Walmart story!!!

    And for the record... I'd have gone all, one-two ninja style, right there with ya!!

    1. I could see it now. Vigilante Moms for Justice! Unite!

  4. terrifying and sweet all rolled into one. wal-mart in general though typically lands ONLY in the terrifying column. glad you survived!

  5. I would never though about kidnapping as an option in a situation like that,because it hardly ever happens here.

    I agree that Walmart is a hazzle, bt somtimes they have some cheap and useful stuff. When we lived in Denver, I bought a fly-fishing rod for $100, very cheap. It served me well, and I still have it. I almost lost it when we moved back to Europe. United Airlines said that fishing rods are regarded as weapons on US airplanes, so I had to check it in. It did of course disappear in the cargo room of the Boing 747. However, 6 months later, they called from the airport and told me that my fishing rod had shown up, probably after traveling ten times around the globe >:)

    Cold As Heaven