Monday, April 27, 2009

Corner Store Characters

Anslee and I went to a birthday party Saturday night, and not to be ones to show up to a house party empty-handed, we decided to stop somewhere for a six pack of beer. HEB was closed, and most of the East Side convenience stores just seemed, well, sketchy.

Finally, we stopped at the Corner Store (that's seriously it's name) on Airport, just west of 35. While this is not quite the East Side, it's still not the nicest part of Austin, despite it's proximity to Hyde Park. But we decided to brave it anyway.

The parking spots were not clearly marked, so I drove past the gas pumps and this old man with a beer belly was walking very slowly to his car. I wasn't really sure how to maneuver around him, and then out of nowhere, a Hispanic guy on a bike rides right through the open parking spots, going about as fast as the old man on foot.

So I managed to wait for both of them and park (although the guy on a bike waved to me to acknowledge the fact that I did not run him over). We made our way inside, grabbed some Shiner, and went to the open register. A surfer/stoner-looking white guy with long, stringy hair greeted us as we came in, but he was busy talking to the bike guy in Spanish, so we went to the other register.

Anslee and I have been trying to figure out exactly where the other cashier is from. He was black and had an accent that could be: 1) West African (or maybe some other region of Africa, but my guess is West African) 2) Carribean (although probably not Jamaican) 3) Cajun/Creole from Louisiana. We could not understand a word he said. He was very friendly and talkative, and we asked him about lottery tickets because we thought it would be funny to get the birthday girl a scratch ticket. But apparently, they had run out on Friday. At least, I think this is what our cashier friend said. He also gave Anslee instructions about the debit card machine, but, once again, she couldn't understand him. I guess he has to deal with dumb Americans who can't understand him on a regular basis, poor guy, but he knew the drill well enough to direct her.

So we waved good-bye to both the stoner cashier and the African/Carribean/Creole cashier and made our way back to the car. On our way, the old guy with the beer belly was walking back into the store to buy something else (he had already purchased a case of Natty Light). The guy on the bike was peddling off, and as he passed us walking to the car, he hacked up the biggest lugy we've ever seen come out of a human being. Damn those Austin allergies.

1 comment:

HeatherPJ said...

that is so weird. i had a similar experience at a waffle house that was no longer an official waffle house in alabama on night. it involved a grown man in a pocahontas costume and another shady guy in dreads asking us if we wanted to buy drugs from him.