Grocery store grumpy guy and anxiety, my my

Today I had to go to Publix, our local grocery store. I took Alice pouched for most of the trip. She did great in the pouch, just chilling and keeping me calm! It was hard work for her because I spent about 10 minutes looking for an item and got really stressed.

After I found everything, I decided to take her out of the pouch and do a little training. We went to the freezer section, which is a section that she’s struggled in. I picked the aisle because it was totally empty. We started walking down the aisle and she was doing great! Then someone else came from the other end towards us. They got close to us, and just then an older man came rushing up behind us. We hadn’t passed the first people yet, so there was room for the old guy to maneuver around us and then around the other people.

Alice was sticking out into the middle of the aisle a bit. Enough that the guy could get by, but I thought it’d be a great chance to work on her coming in close. I gave her the touch command, and she responded but quite slowly. The man rushing up behind us had to slow his cart down and he was really upset! He harrumphed loudly as he slowed. Alice was already walking in towards me, and as he went around us, I smiled at him and said “She’s new to the freezer section!”. Which is true, this is only the third time she’s ever been on the ground in the freezer section. The guy made a mean face and grumbled something and sped on.

So we walked on and just as we were passing the other couple that was coming our way, they stopped and got something out of the freezer and dropped a box on the floor! It made a big noise! Alice jumped, but was able to recover and move along. I was very pleased with that!

She was able to walk to the end of the freezer section and we turned down one of the main aisles along the edge of the store. She did OK there, though she heeled too far away from me. We saw some really nice women who had Japanese Chin before and had a good little chat while Alice hung out standing there.

Then I tried going down one of the aisles, but Alice didn’t want to go. So I tried the next aisle and she still didn’t want to go. She started looking a little stressed at me trying to go down the aisles, so I decided she’d had enough for today. I re-pouched her and went to checkout.

That was a mini disaster because there were no cashiers!!! Only self checkout, which I cannot handle. There were about 6 of us walking back and forth asking for someone to get on the register. I got really stressed, and unfortunately Alice wasn’t able to calm me this time– she got nervous instead. I guess she only has one calming episode per outing limit right now. Luckily one of the other women thought to go to customer service, and they sent someone to check us all out.

No pictures, sorry, I was going to get one in one of the aisles, but we never made it there.

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