Twigs and Berries

A few months ago when we went to Sam’s for our monthly super-size stock-up run, they were no longer carrying Mom’s favorite breakfast bars – the 48-count, four-variety assortment box of Quaker chewy granola bars – after almost 4-years of having it in stock.  We looked in the cereal aisle, the coffee aisle, and checked out all of the end-caps and the center-aisle displays.  Nothing!  So we settled for what they had, which was a 30-count, three-variety assortment of Quaker chewy granola bars.  The slightly bigger sized bar was supposed to compensate for the absence of the additional 18 bars we got in the other variety pack.

Mom didn’t like them.

“These breakfast bars are bigger than before,” she commented the first morning she got one with her OJ and coffee.

“I know,” I replied.  “Sam’s didn’t have the other ones that we usually get, so we had to buy these.  They taste the same, don’t they?”

“I don’t know,” she said, turning the bar back and forth in front of her face as though that would trigger a response from her taste buds.  “It’s just so big.  I don’t know if I can eat it all.”

“Then don’t,” I sighed knowing the difference between her old bar and this one was maybe somewhere around a tenth of an ounce.  “Just eat what you can and throw away the rest.”

“Well that would be wasteful.  I guess I’ll have to force myself to eat it all.  Just don’t get these again,” she instructed, waggling it at me before taking a generous bite.

A month later, we were back at Sam’s, but they still weren’t stocking the 48-count box.  We decided to go next door and see if Walmart had something that would work, which they did.  Their Great Value brand had an 18-count variety pack of chewy granola bars that we thought might do the trick, so we bought a couple of boxes and brought them home for Mom’s breakfast enjoyment.

We were wrong.

About a week after she began eating them for breakfast, she stopped me dead in my tracks as I brought her a banana, a bar and her OJ.

“There’s something wrong with these bars,” she exclaimed, picking it up from the napkin on her lap and staring daggers at the wrapper.

“What do you mean by wrong?” I asked.

“They’re crunchy,” she said, taking a tentative nibble from the bar’s exposed corner, which was sticking out of the wrapper where I had used scissors to cut it open for her.

“Well, Mom, they’re granola bars.  They’re supposed to be sort of crunchy.”

“Not like this,” she said.  “There’s something in them.  Like seeds.”

“Seeds?” I asked.

“Yes, seeds or something.  Like pieces of stuff.”

“Stuff?” I continued.  “Like twigs and bark?”

“Don’t be silly,” she countered.  “No, like seeds.  Anyway, I don’t like them much,” she exclaimed with a note of finality.  “Don’t get these anymore.”

We went to Sam’s yesterday for our monthly stock-up.  Although I didn’t hold out much hope, we wandered down the cereal aisle – just in case.  And, lo and behold, my prayers were answered because her beloved breakfast bars were back on the shelf.

Bill had to restrain me because apparently dancing in circles hugging a 48-count, four-variety box of Quaker chewy granola bars looks a little bit crazy, even in Sam’s Club.

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