The Mystery of the Missing ‘Power Saw’
Every Saturday in 1965 was a big shopping day, with people from all over Burke County coming to town to pay bills, shop and buy that week’s groceries.
There was an elderly wiry woman that came to the Morganton Food Store each Saturday, where I worked. She would place all her already-purchased items on the floor and windowsill next to a bin where the store kept empty cardboard boxes before she did her grocery shopping. Back then, we asked customers if they wanted a box or a bag, some bag boys said “poke” for bag.
After the woman was finished with her grocery shopping and checked out, we would call her a taxi cab to take her and all her belongings home. Well, on this particular Saturday, when the taxi arrived, she became overly excited and announced to me that someone had stolen her “power saw.” I was putting all her groceries into a shopping buggy along with her other purchases when the taxi began to honk the horn.
My boss, Mr. Harold Winters, began ushering me toward the door with her groceries when I told him of the missing power saw. For the next several minutes, every available store employee went looking for the missing chain saw to no avail, when all of a sudden, the old woman shouted, “Here it is, I found it!”
I turned to look — she was holding a woman’s parasol.
That was over half a century ago and I still get a big laugh about it!
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