Two Friends on a Saturday Morning



A friend may well be reckoned the masterpiece of nature.

~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson


The morning sky was a thick gray when I picked up my friend, Nancy, at her home. The plan was to take care of some shopping, run a few last-minute errands and share some much-needed ‘girl time.’

“Umbrellas?” Nancy asked, as she slid into the passenger side of my CRV. I smiled and pointed at the two I had tossed in the back seat. (My friend and I know each other well...we can talk in a kind of friendship steno and finish the other’s sentences.)

It was about 9:30 when we entered a Dunkin Donuts drive-thru to buy a couple of Lattes. I twice repeated the order into the speaker before driving to the pick-up window. We were surprised to see a grumpy cashier chomp on a wad of gum as I handed him a ten-dollar bill.

“Here ya go, hon." [Snap.}He frowned as he handed me the two coffees along with my change on a pressed-paper tray.

“The manager must not be here,” I whispered, and passed the tray to Nancy.

“He probably is the manager,” she replied.

I had only driven a few feet when my friend noticed that both of our coffee cups were only 3/4 full. The fellow directly behind us beeped his horn with sharp impatience. Nancy and I looked at each other and shook our heads in unison. 'So not worth it,' we thought, and left with our three-quarter Lattes.

We then headed for Nancy’s bank because she wanted to deposit a check from a customer into her business account. After I stopped the car at the drive-up window, Nancy leaned over and apologized to the teller as she had run out of deposit slips. She explained that she would be happy to fill one out, but the check to be deposited to her business account was properly deposit-endorsed. I showed the teller the check with a ‘For Deposit Only’ stamp on the back. (The stamp included the name of Nancy’s business and the checking account number to which the check was to be deposited. The check was made out to the name of her business.) The teller said she would take care of it and motioned for me to place the check in the drawer.

After glancing at the check, the teller asked if we wanted to “deposit the check into this account,” pointing to stamped deposit endorsement on the back.

I nodded, bewildered, and glanced over at my friend whose face was contorted with stifled laughter. “Putting the deposit notice aside, doesn’t she know that it’s illegal to deposit a business check like that into a personal account?”

“I don’t know, Genna,” she replied, gasping for air. “But this teller is new…I’ve never seen her before.”

I was a little embarrassed because the teller must have heard our conversation over the speaker. I had no sooner grasped the receipt from the drawer and pulled it towards me when the she yanked the receptacle back with a loud clang. Nancy spluttered her coffee as I thanked the teller while checking to make sure my fingers were still intact.

Our next stop was Walgreens. We each purchased a few small items and left the store. As if reading each other’s thoughts on Murphy’s Law, Nancy and I both paused to check our bags and make sure all purchases were accounted for. Sure enough, the book of stamps I had purchased was missing.

We went back into the store and approached the clerk who was alone at the check-out counter. I quickly explained the oversight. She rolled her eyes to the ceiling and breathed a sigh of inconvenience. “Ohhh. Yeah, I forgot.” With a sullen look, she lifted the drawer to her register, pulled out a book of stamps and handed it to me in silence. My friend gently tugged at my arm -- she knew my patience was nearing the point of no return.

“Thank you,” I remarked to the clerk, smiling. “But for future reference, the words, ‘I’m sorry,’ work wonders in these kinds of situations.”

The clerk gave me blank stare in return. “Huh?”

I could see the sparks in Nancy's eyes when she loudly cleared her throat. “Right. Okay -- we’re done here.”

As we made our way to the exit doors, I looked at my friend and said, “You know, I keep thinking we're somehow trapped in scenes from Deliverance.” We both started to laugh as we walked out of the store to the parking-lot sidewalk.

We were still laughing when we discovered that the light drizzle from only minutes before had turned into a downpour. The umbrellas, of course, were still in the car. Nancy grabbed my hand. “Ready?” I nodded and smiled. We made a dash for my car, giggling like schoolgirls as the craziness of that Saturday morning washed away in the laughter and the rain.



Friendship cannot be explained, only cherished, like reading a treasured old book over and over again; but each time, finding something new.

On a personal note: This hub is really about friendship. But I wanted to add that both Nancy and I held customer service jobs in our younger years. If we had treated customers in this way, we would have lost our jobs in a heartbeat. It seems there is a different world out there today. Simple courtesies and a smile or two appear to have been lost in the rush of progress.



Copyright © 2012 Genna East All Rights Reserved


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Comments 45 comments

Becky Katz profile image

Becky Katz 4 years ago from Hereford, AZ

I have had days like this.. Usually don't end well either. I think ignorant is catching.


billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

Cherished indeed! What a fun friendship! There is so much to laugh at when you have a friend like that!


Vincent Moore 4 years ago

You're absolutely right about the POOR calibre of service being offered by the younger generation, they hate their jobs and therefore pass their miserable outlook on to paying customers. For without customers they wouldn't have a dam job. I owned two retail businesses for almost 10 years and my staff were trained to be courteous and pleasant with our valuable customers.

If they chose to do otherwise and less enthusiastic, they were FIRED with great enthusiasm. Murphy's Law did apply in your case. You left your umbrellas in your locked car, well you both needed some water dropped on you to cool off your emotions felt. Ha Ha Ha...great write my friend, I felt I was there with you both.


Mr Love Doctor profile image

Mr Love Doctor 4 years ago from Puerto Rico

This is an excellent Hub, and yes, having a good friend and a sense of humor makes all the difference. One advantage to how lousy service people are these days is that when you, personally, decide to give extra-good service, people notice and tips follow.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

It is telling that both characters knew not to sweat the little things. Patience won out and the laughter made the Saturday morning memorable, rather than a string of angry encounters.


writer20 profile image

writer20 4 years ago from Southern Nevada

You are so right, some people shouldn't be on cash registers . They give snotty comments and bad looks.

Voted up, funny and Awesome, Joyce.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Becky;

Unfortunately I think you may be right. Thanks for those comments. :-)

Hi Billy;

Yes, it is a wonderful friendship. It is one that teaches the value of humor, and the ability to laugh at situations that can bring us down. Good to see you.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Vincent;

Thank you! It certainly seems that the quality of service has plummeted. When we were younger, we didn’t complain about the job, or the wage. We were happy we had a job. It was work and the quality that was important.

I can easily see how you would have trained to your staff to be polite and courteous – two of your qualities and as a good person. :-)

Lol. Yes, the rain worked wonders that day – in addition to being accompanied by a good friend, and a sense of humor. Good to see you.

Hi Doc;

Thank you. And yes, friends and sense of humor go a long way. I think the worst service these days are from those who do not work in positions where they are tipped at all. Pride seems to have abated.

Thanks for stopping by.


xstatic profile image

xstatic 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

Great illustration of friendship!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Mike;

What a nice thing to say, thank you. But I honestly don’t know if I would have been as patient had Nancy not accompanied me – or vice versa. At the very least, we lifted each other’s moods. Good to see you. :-)

Hi Joyce;

You bring up an excellent point. Sometimes the people occupying service positions are the least qualified in terms of temperament, etc. Customers can be polite or difficult, and it takes a special training and patience to be able handle these situations.

What bothers me is when I see someone chatting cell phone with a line of customers at the checkout counter, or clerks chatting with others as they keep customers waiting.

Thank you for your kind words and votes.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Xstatic;

Thank you! She is a great friend, and one that I am pleased accompanied me on that day. :-)


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 4 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

We seem to be in a sharp national decline, and we desperately need a change in leadership.

Excellent Hub, Genna!


Ghaelach 4 years ago

Morning Genna.

It does seem that a some folk have forgotten the word respect and that the customer is KING. Without us they wouldn't have a job.

But not to be to harch on the customer service people 99% are very helpful and many go out of their way to help the customer get what they need.

It seems that you and Nancy had a bad Saturday morning.

Take care and have a nice Sunday.

LOL Ghaelach


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Will

Thank you! Good to see you. :-)


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Good morning Ghaelach :-)

I wish that were true where we are, Gaelich, but it isn’t. I see less and less of the common courtesies every day. Dunkin Donuts has almost become famous for it. I went to Macy’s the other day, and couldn’t find anyone to answer a question I had. I walked to three different stations in the same vicinity and no one was there. I finally found a couple of clerks giggling and chatting with each other. I said, “Excuse me, but could someone please help me?” The response was, “We’ll be with you in just a minute.” And they went back to talking. Unbelievable. I left the store.

Thanks so much for your comments, and enjoy your weekend! We are looking forward to seeing the closing ceremonies of the Olympics. The opening ceremonies were wonderful.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

Hello Genna, Sounds like you had a day in Hellville. HaHa.. Having a friend like Nancy makes it all worth-while.. I enjoyed your story and i must say that customer service certainly ' ain't ' like it used to be...Cheers


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Genna, did each of these events all happen in the same small time period as your story tells??? I can't believe your incredible patience along with Nancy's. Of course, anger doesn't resolve slovenly attitudes, but I usually dissolve into tears of frustration (in private) when I have a run of being treated like an intrusion rather than a welcome customer. You are a magician of extraordinary abilities, because your story is a perfect illustration of the magic that true friends bring into our lives. You turned a day of ordinary adventures with two close friends encountering a cast of mundane gnomes into a meaningful tale of beauty. Truly a work of art...


kashmir56 profile image

kashmir56 4 years ago from Massachusetts

Hello Genna, Thanks for sharing this great friendship hub ! It's to bad but this bad service is ever where you go.

Vote up and more !!!


Scribenet profile image

Scribenet 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

Sounds like an adventurous day you wll be reminding each other about for years to come and now we are in on it too! ;)

Good you had a friend to share it with, so instead of getting frustrated , you had a good laugh.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Ruby; Amy; Kash; Scrib;

(Four of my favorite people.) Thanks for your comments, and hugs to you all. :-)

Where we are, the Dunkin Donuts and Walgreen incidents aren’t unusual at all; this happens I’d say about 35% of time. Dunkin gets orders wrong but sometimes they just don’t hear you over the speaker and don’t tell you. The Latte thing is fairly common. They put too much foam on the top, so by the time you get it, you end up with 1/3 less the coffee. They are almost never polite. Walgreens isn’t much better. They either forget to put a small item in your bag, double charge you, forget to print the slip, and so on. The managers don’t train them enough, or they hire anyone that can walk and talk. You get used to the poorer service after a while.

The bank incident is what was really weird. I have never experienced that before. I remember we talked about that for a bit because it just didn’t make any sense. Nancy later concluded that she was just trying to do a number on us because we didn’t have a slip made out -- regardless of what she told the clerk at the drive-up. My take is that she was very young, and not properly trained.

If Nancy had not been with me, I would have never been that patient. But that’s what good friends are for. We are able to look at the humor of the situation, which helps diffuse the tension. We joked that things happen in three’s.

Good to see you!


BlossomSB profile image

BlossomSB 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

Their smiles might have been missing, but your tale certainly brought a smile to my face. We all experience things like this these days and it makes it so difficult to keep a positive attitude. Just as well you had your friend along.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Thank you, Blossom. Had it not been for Nancy, and vice versa, patience would have been a difficult, if not fleeting, quality to aspire to that day. :-)


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

I know just how you feel! lol! customer service seems to have been in decline over the last ten years or so, what happened to manners? and learning their jobs properly! you and your friend sound like you had a good day though, and that's what counts, friendship, voted up! cheers nell


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 4 years ago

My dear friend just left me after being here for over a week. We have been best friends for over 15 years now. It's wonderful when you can share from the heart and know that it is taken with great understanding. Our ventures out were so enjoyable as we had great fun. Thanks for the share.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Nell;

Thank you. Sad but true on the customer service. And it is friendship that counts. Where would we be without it? Good to see you!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Teaches;

How wonderful that you had such an enjoyable time with your best friend. Good friendship is one of the treasures in life. Thank you for those kind words. :-)


Maya 4 years ago

Great story Gen. Lol about that crazy service too --- it’s been getting worse and worse every year. You and Nancy had fun through it all though and friendship is what counts. The bank happening is a little scary --- I’m going to check my receipts more often.


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

It takes a good friend to giggle and hold in check the darker responses to those rudies y'all encountered that day, Genna. Me, I learned a long time ago to check the bag at the drive through before pulling off and seven times out of ten somethings missing sure enough. Loved reading about the Saturday excursions you and Nancy had. True story Genna: a business partner who knew Hilton owner of the hotel chain gave me one of his fun gifts which was a picture of himself in the middle of a million dollar bill, it looked real, it really did. As a joke I handed to a drive in girl to pay for a coffee or something; in all seriousness she gaped in awe for a while and then said she'd have to ask her manager if the company could cash it! Saved her from being embarrassed by telling her what the bill really was. lol!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hi Maya!

I know my friend. The bank incident was definitely a "what the heck was that?" To be fair, we all make mistakes, but I double check my deposit receipts now. Thank you for the visit and good words.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hello Alastar

I agree. If it had not been for Nancy, that Saturday morning excursion would have put a damper on the rest of the day.

What a moment with the Hilton bill. She actually said that she would have to ask her boss if she could cash it. Yipes! She must have laughed when you told her what it really was. Thanks for the fun comments. :-)


Lord De Cross profile image

Lord De Cross 4 years ago

Genna East. What a narrative! I was glued to your story. You made it like an episode of Maude. Totally agreeing with the perspective of today's H.R.'s lack of professionalism. Young yuppies, just graduate like pieces of a domino. There won't be changes, because morality is at its lowest. Sharing and admiring your work!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Thank you! It was one of those days you would like to forget; but having a friend along turns it into a treasure in a way. I don't know what's going on in the world today...things just seem to be getting crazier and crazier. It can be depressing at times. Good to see you.


b. Malin profile image

b. Malin 4 years ago

Wonderful Hub Genna, I could so relate...Especially how times and people have changed. You ladies did well to just let it go. In spite of it all, good Friends are always what saves the day!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Hello B!

They certainly do save the day. Thank you for that lovely comment. Good to see you. :-)


thelyricwriter profile image

thelyricwriter 4 years ago from West Virginia

Genna, wow, what a morning! At the least, glad to see that you and your friend can still find laughter through all of this. People have changed. You don't get that great customer experience as much these days. It is almost like people feel that they deserve something before hand. If I ever saw them act like that at my business, they would be out the door quickly. I believe a happy customer comes back. Genna, hope this Saturday was better. LOL Voted across the board and shared.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Thank you! I know exactly what you mean. As a consultant, I often hear clients complain about poor service. People have changed; and it's sad to observe at times. Good to see you, and thanks for the wonderful comments and votes. :-)


Rosemay50 profile image

Rosemay50 4 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

Wow what a day. Customer service no longer seems to matter, their businesses seem to be doing so well they don't need to worry about losing customers. But what shines in this hub are two friends who can sopport each other and deflect the negative vibes and put a smile back on each others face. That is priceless.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Thank you, Rose. Friendship definitely survived the day, and made it fun rather than depressing. Good to see you. :-)


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 4 years ago from On the edge

Even the dreariest of days can be a joy with a friend by your side as you've demonstrated so well here. I can remember days with my sister or a friend that seemed so special when they were nothing out of the ordinary in and of themselves. Friendship truly does make a world of difference! Such a nice read. I really enjoyed it.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Thank you so much. It's so good to see you. Friendship truly does make a difference. :-)


PegCole17 profile image

PegCole17 3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

This is so awesome, Genna. I love each of the stories you shared and have had the same kind of experiences with my BFF of well, let's just say a load of years, since we were in our 20s, a few decades back. She and I can finish each other's sentences and talk in steno, too. We know each other so well it is amazing. And the two of us have laughed at similar displays of "customer service" like the kind you got on your Saturday outing. Alone, I would have been fuming, but together, we were either amused or flat out left the establishment without a purchase. There is really no excuse for this kind of treatment. Not supporting stores who allow their employees to dish it out is as good as it gets. Bravo and nicely told!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 3 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Thanks, Peg. I've had similar errand mornings in the past -- not many, thank goodness -- but I am pleased that Nancy was there to share it with me. A little friendship and laugher go a long way at times like these. Your friend sounds so much like Nancy. Where would we be without our friends? :-) Thanks so much for that thoughtful comment. Good to see you.


Vickiw 2 years ago

Hi Genna,

Really enjoyed this, and in a strange way it is comforting to know that others have experienced this total lack of customer service! I thought it might be just me, being far too critical and particular.

Friends are a true delight in life, often far more fun and way more understanding than the families we ended up in! Lovely Hub!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 2 years ago from Massachusetts, USA Author

Thank you, Vicki. I agree that friends are "a true delight in life." Where would we be without them? :-)


Robert Sacchi profile image

Robert Sacchi 13 hours ago

Nice short stories about little annoyances. I liked the drawing, did you draw it?

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