As I dug in my purse at the grocery store the other day, out of the corner of my eye I notice two items on the conveyor belt slide to one corner as the other stuff went to the opposite corner. At midnight I realize those two exact same items didn't make it home with me.
I can't go get this stuff tomorrow without the receipt at least, which I've thrown away. Now that I think about it, I've even taken the trash outside to the recycle bin, which we share with the neighbors. By the time I check tomorrow they might bury my receipt with more stuff. Dammit.
A big terrible cold wind has just come up, and I'm in my pajamas with one of those big black flashlights that police carry---the kind you can kill someone with if need be. As I head around the side of the house I try to be really quiet and keep the flashlight pointed straight down as much as possible. The bin is right in front of the neighbor's window, and they might think I'm a robber poking around out there.
I hold the flashlight straight down into the bin with the same hand that's holding up the lid, digging with my other hand. I can't believe how many other receipts and small papers happen to be there on top, and I'm freezing my butt off.
The very second I secure the receipt, some shadowy thing comes down from the sky (or most likely a tree), and lands with a thud on the bin next to me. Almost simultaneously we let out a shriek, only I stop mine short with my hand. During this same business I drop the flashlight into the bin, and it slams shut.
So I'm standing there in the dark, and I'm thinking, oh, it's that stray black cat, but then I think, no, could be a skunk...but then I think, no, it came out of the tree, stupid. Oh, and there was that strange shriek. Pretty sure skunks don't shriek.
So the cat runs away while I reach in for the flashlight, and I make a run for the house before the neighbors come out to ask what the hell is going on. As I reach the front porch my slipper falls off just as I go up a step, and my bare toes continue forward, miss, and crack up against the stones. Yow. I felt that all the way to my hip.
Once inside the house I look over the receipt and realize those two missing items ARE NOT on there. So by some odd chance they were both not scanned, still made it down the conveyor belt, and then chose to slide over to another corner because they knew they weren't paid for, right? Of course.