Books and Boxes
April 11, 2011
I realized the other day that the reason I love shopping at my warehouse club might have less to do with the low prices and jumbo sizes and more to do with the way they pack my groceries at the checkout stand. They put them in boxes.
When I was a preschooler, that’s how I wished our groceries came to the house after my mom read me Quiet Quincy and the Delivery Truck by Polly Kemp.
Quincy, a quiet freckle-faced carrot top in overalls, slips away from his mother during a trip to the grocery store and climbs into the delivery van to see what’s inside. The delivery driver, Mr. Biggs, doesn’t see Quincy hidden among the grocery orders. He closes the van doors, jumps in, fires up the engine, and starts his daily rounds.
At 4 or 5 years old, I probably should have been concerned that Quiet Quincy was separated from his mother and that he might never find his way home again. All that drama was lost on me. Instead, I was fascinated with those boxes. Our groceries came to our house packed in brown paper bags, and they were never delivered by anyone in a yellow delivery van.
I remember asking my mom why we couldn’t bring our groceries home in boxes. I don’t exactly remember what her answer was, except that it was most unsatisfactory. Just in case you were worried, Mr. Biggs delivers Quiet Quincy back home to his mother, along with another box of groceries. Lucky Quincy. Now, I’m a grown up, and I carry my groceries home in boxes. Lucky me.