Well, crap on a cracker

Talk about an entire morning wasted.

Allow me to rant a little… 😉

The morning started with a plan. Intensions were set, goals were defined, lists were made. I was going to have an accomplished day.

And then…

The apocalypse happened.


Not covid, mind you, or lockdown (that I know of, I ignore mass media and hysteria), nor are we out of toilet paper (although that’s getting low).

But let me start at the beginning.

I was about to leave for a shopping trip for the family so I could head back to my place at a reasonable time, i.e. be able to work this afternoon. It was 8:50 am and Sonja was wandering around the kitchen.

“Can you make me something?” she said.

I looked at the clock. Her online math class would start in ten minutes, her dad already began teaching online in his office, and the teen boy was still asleep.

“Ok,” I said. What’s another ten minutes…

I made her an egg in a hole and gave her a nectarine and brought the plate to her table where she set up for class. She made her own tea.

“Teacher’s not online,” she said.

We waited a bit, and Sonja checked if she missed a posting with an alert that today might be an asynchronous day (another redundant covid pandemic term we’ve absorbed into our daily conversations).

There was no mention of the teacher being absent today. Given this is a compressed math course, every minute counts.

Sonja emailed a guidance counselor which was also ignored.

I told her to do some review and just wait. It was probably a technical issue affecting the school board.

I went back upstairs and made my son some breakfast and left it on the stove, turned off but covered. Then I left.

First store I shopped at declined my bank card. I tapped it, so I tried again by inserting it.

Declined again.

I did a quick calculation: yesterday was pay day, and the machine didn’t say insufficient funds, so it must be at their end, not mine.

I inserted a credit card, which was accepted.


In the car, I checked my bank app on my phone. It let me access it, but a message popped up there were some service disruptions.

Okay then.

On the way home I stopped at Sobeys, an older but smaller store than the more recently renovated massive conglomerate chains that take six hours to get through.

A very old couple was standing in the doorway blocking the entrance. They were listening to an employee, a young, fairly large and friendly looking guy. The old couple went inside and I was about to follow them when he approached me.

“The system’s down,” he said. “They’re only accepting cash. No debit or credit.”


I shop there frequently enough to know their machine is not supplied by the same back as mine, which struck me as odd. Two major banks in Canada are having service issues?

I turned around and went back to my car. Meanwhile Sonja forwarded me an email message from someone at the school board saying Rogers Communications is down. They’re a big conomerate here in Canada who supply internet, cable tv and similar services, much like Bell Canada does.

So she’s been sitting staring at her laptop not having a math class all this time.

I told her to do review and occupy herself with something. She’s pretty creative, I wasn’t worried about her.

While driving toward home I remebered another small grocery store in a neighbourhood just east of my kids’ house. I get down to Lake Shore and start driving east when suddenly there was massive construction blocking most of the roadway.

If you’re from Toronto you know the streetcars run along Lake Shore from west to east. Well, through the stretch in the west, the entire mid section of the road was ripped up.

Given how often they’ve fixed the tracks on this section of the road, I was more than just a little irritated. Why is this an annual event? Can’t they fix it right the first time?

Side note: My son traveled that way to school on the street car for four years. It was always under construction. Very rarely was he using a streetcar; mostly they used shuttle buses because of said construction. 😐

As I traveled through the construction I became aware there were no left turns to be made. To get back to the house I would have to drive further east, then north, and do a big loop.

But first, shopping.

Since I was leaving for the burbs today I was going to stock the house with stuff that will make it easier for the family to feed themselves. Knowing their dad was teaching and later flying, I also thought I’d get something ready for them to have for dinner. A pasta casserole with chicken and bacon sounds easy, right? We had a roasted chicken yesterday and there are leftovers… Mix in some veg or mushrooms, and top with cheese…

I entered the store with my grocery items in my head and spent the next 20 minutes filling my cart, occasionally snapping photos of the exaggerated prices.

Might be a good idea to go on a severely restricted diet, I thought at some of the prices. Some popular and enduring cereal many families rely on was marked up to $9.99. For Cheerios. Really? That’s a 50% price hike.


I finally get to the register and notice three staff members, fully masked, talking with each other. I panicked momentarily; was I supposed to wear a mask in this store? I don’t remember seeing a sign about “highly encouraged” and wondered if the covid or lockdown police would cuff me and haul me off to jail.

Then I remembered I no longer give a crap on a cracker, so 🤷‍♀️

“We only take cash,” the girl at the register told me when I began to place an item on the thingy.

She began an elaborate and animated explanation which was difficult to hear given the mask, but I heard enough terms to know that there was a service interruption. Which, as I realized by now, was more widely spread than locally.

It pained me to leave the cart behind. I didn’t have enough cash on me to cover even half the contents so I had to abandoned it. I was a bit distraught, truth be told, because I ended up forgetting to grab my reusable bags, one of which was lined.


My adventures were, of course, far from over since now I had to navigate construction. I didn’t bother stopping at any other stores and figured, the family will just have to make do with what’s there. But, I would still make the casserole when I got home, right after I have a coffee and a toasted smoked Applewood cheddar sandwich with pear slices. 🙃

When I got home, I left the kitchen to the family to get their lunch sorted since I prefer to cook without tripping over people and clutter which is why you get a blog post from me. I typed it into my phone because I already packed up my laptop. I wasn’t supposed to be here this long…

So, thank you for stopping by. If this post publishes without incident, perhaps the apocalypse is already on its way back to where it came from. 😀


27 thoughts on “Well, crap on a cracker

  1. Oh my, what a day you had, and you held up rather admirably. I know it’s not funny but I can so relate. I remember when Larry lost his credit card, had it shut down, which means my is shut down too, but he failed to warn me. He was working on the other side of the country at the time. I was at the store with 4 hungry kids, a full cart, and my card was rejected! I had to leave enough food behind that would have fed us for a week. Hungry kids, hangry mom and no credit card. I was fuming. I went to my sisters, she saved me again. On a scarier note think how easy it is to take us down. Crazy. Hugs, C

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Endless road construction…there’s something I can relate to. They’ve been working on the road between my home and work for 16 months now, and counting. Never mind that it was supposed to be finished on May 27. This means, even though I’ve been at my job for 20 months now, only four of those involved a normal commute. Ugh.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m still, although this is NOT a funny situation, laughing at your title. I had something similar happen on my first day driving after 6 weeks and being told I might have 6 months to live (which is not true…but imagine it 😬). I truly thought it was the end. Our internet was down in entire region, anyone who needed a new debit/credit card for my particular bank had received faulty cards (apparently a problem on Visa’s end)…it had JUST expired after 3 years and I was supposed to expire in half a year! I’ll keep giggling through the icky days and think of your cracker “treat” (the sandwich sounds yummy though!) and keep humor and wit intact! Well done, Mom! You flow with all the punches!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. We had the same debit/credit problems here in Edmonton today at least for the entire morning.
    I went from place to place and finally to my own bank’s ATM driving around for almost two hours before I had enough cash to buy a cup of coffe at Timmy’s 🤣

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s easy to imagine a world of utter chaos in light of system failures like you experienced. The entire world would shut down. I’ve long kept cash for just such an event- we are trained to do that along with all of our other earthquake/tsunami/volcano prepping here. I need to replenish though as that stash has gone towards gas in the last few months-


    1. But if the registers are electronic, how would they open to access the cash? Mom just told me taking money out of ATMs was also not working….

      Yet, why was I able to pay for gas at the pump with a credit card?

      It’s weird…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I saw a news thing about it- not necessarily electronic but phone/internet/mobile for customers of Rogers?? ATM’s also- but if not a customer with them (such as the busy you used your credit card at) then those places still work I guess

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Sheesh! Looks like my “friend” Murphy decided to pay you a visit🙄🤦🏼‍♀️ I hope everything is back to normal. Whatever normal even means anymore🤪

    Thanks for the reminder that I need to get some more cash. I usually try to keep some “just in case”, but I’ve only got about $10 right now. And as we all know, $10 won’t get very much these days☹️

    Hope the drive back to the burbs is/was drama & construction free🤞🤞


    Liked by 1 person

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