I am from Texas. Not only am I from Texas, but I am from Canadian, Texas, home to approximately two thousand people, give or take. Unbeknownst to an alarming number of people I’ve met, Canadian, Texas, doesn’t refer to a little-known province of that nice country up North. There’s a Canadian “river” in Texas and it is for that little stream that my hometown is named.
So we went to this loverly little hamlet for a few days since the hubz was on spring break and we hadn’t been there since July. Gosh, I love my hometown. Even more do I love my husband, whose idea it was to drive twenty something hours with an almost-two-year-old and a heavily pregnant woman to vacation in a town where you can’t buy beer. The man’s a saint.
When you’re from a small town and you’ve been away for a while there are lots of “sights” one simply must not miss when visiting. One of these attractions in Canadian is the Pharmacy. Now, some people might think that a pharmacy is just a place where one can go to get medications, flu shots, etc. People who think that have obviously never been to The Pharmacy in Canadian, Texas. It is so much more than just a pharmacy.
For example, would you expect newly-engaged gals to jet to the neighborhood CVS to start their bridal registries? I didn’t think so. However, if you live in Canadian, the Pharmacy is on every bride’s registry. Period. Chalk it up to the fact that, back in the day, the Pharmacy was the only place people could purchase fancy gifts without having to drive two hours to the Dillard’s at the Westgate Mall to pick out place settings. Nowadays, registering for wedding gifts at the Pharmacy is more of a deep-rooted tradition than necessity, what with the new-fangled internets and all. However, it’s also considered in good taste to register at a store that the ancient old ladies who will be attending your wedding shower (and who probably attended your mama’s shower, too) can get to without much fuss. Plus, we like to shop local.
The Pharmacy is not the only place in town where people register for weddings, I might add. When my brother got married, I distinctly remember tagging along on a registry-making trip around town which included such stops as The Peppermint Tree (another staple) and True Value. I am not lying about the last one. They have fudge there. And Yankee candles. I sincerely regret the fact that I didn’t just register for fudge when I got married.
When we got engaged, I’m sure my sweet husband was thrown for a bit of a loop that we were required to register at the Pharmacy, but he was a good sport and I, in turn, let him pick out some dishes with cowboy brands on them. T’was an early lesson in marital give and take.
The only problem with registering at the Pharmacy is that sometimes there are just so many people buying you gifts that they run out of things you’ve registered for. At that point, the sweet ladies who have worked at the Pharmacy for centuries call your mother and she goes in to pick out more stuff. This can be either really good or absolutely horrendous, depending on your mother. When all of those things run out, the sweet ladies take the liberty of finding a few more things that “go with” what you’ve already got. In our case, this explains the plethora of crystal bowls and platters we received as gifts. We literally use crystal all the time. I figure, we might as well use it since we have it. Also, it makes the Kraft Mac’n’Cheese look so classy!
Part of what we got for wedding gifts in C-town were a lot of gift certificates to the Pharmacy. That way we had the liberty of choosing exactly which crystal accessories we wanted to add to our growing collection. We kind of had a hard time finding enough things to purchase, to be honest. So much of a hard time that we bought my brother-in-law, Dan, a 12″ armadillo piggy bank. The armadillo was dressed like a sheriff. That was a real selling point.
Suffice it to say that we were greatly surprised when my mother produced a gift certificate from the Pharmacy when we arrived at the homestead last week. I mean, we worked really hard to use all of those up. Plus, let’s be honest. We’re one and a half kids and almost three years into this marriage. The last thing we’re expecting is to be doing the last of our wedding shopping. My assumption was that we had actually used the fifty bucks and just had the paper memento left over. I was dubious, to say the least.
After one of the Pharmacy ladies looked in her file – and by file I mean spiral bound notebook – she confirmed that, sure enough, we actually had fifty dollars at our disposal! Now, it was a hard decision to make between buying more crystal and hoping against hope that they had another one of those armadillo piggy banks. Lucky for us we were able to narrow down our selections to some real winners. We got a cowboy cookie cutter and a couple of boxes of ammunition, both obvious choices. And, since Granny was having a birthday party for Mags that night, we got the little cowgirl a stick horse that makes real horse sounds and, best of all, a 3-D clown fish kite! If that’s not fifty dollars well spent, I just don’t know what is. God bless the Pharmacy, that’s all I have to say.
Also, we went to the grocery store that day and got an Elmo pinata for the party…but that’s a story for another day, like tomorrow. Stay tuned!