On previous visits to Sainsbury's for a Supermarket Shop (as opposed to a Local Shop which is twice as much fun) we have been eyeing the mobility scooters plugged in at the entrance to the main store waiting to be of use
to "our valued customers."
Rather than making painful progress though the aisles, we have been debating, should Mr B avail himself of four wheels and a shopping basket? Surely, I reasoned, it couldn't be any
more difficult than the Dodgems? Mr B wasn't too sure that it would be as much fun as the Dodgems but was prepared to give it a go. Hence I was looking forward rather more than usual to our Big Shop.
obstacle proved to be collecting a key from the Customer Service Desk. It was poor timing on my part, no doubt, because I found myself at the end of a long queue. Three people wanted to exchange goods, in turn (i) a woolly jumper; (ii) a pair of pyjamas; and
(iii) some baby clothes. You are right, I really shouldn't have been so nosey but it is boring standing in a queue unless you take an interest, don't you know?
Two people didn't have items to exchange
but they did want to check whether they had won anything on the Lottery. From their resigned expressions, I gathered that disappointment had been in store for them. If you will excuse the pun. Either that or they were extremely good actors, afraid that if
they let out whoops of delight, the people in the queue behind them might feel that they should share just a teeny tiny part of the largesse that had been visited upon them. Both bought more tickets, I noticed, which only goes to show that Hope Springs Eternal.
I thought it would be so much fun, Mr B racing along the aisles, plucking from the shelves, as he flew past, packets of Rice Krispies and Weetabix, cartons of green-top milk, bags of Maris Piper potatoes and cans of
deodorant. The handy basket would be filled with goodies in no time at all. We would finish our shopping in record time.
Unfortunately I had completely failed to factor in a major hindrance to our Merry Progress
in the shape of other customers. How dare they flock to the store on a Saturday morning! My fault again, I fear, picking the busiest time of the week for our excursion.
Think of it this way: when you drive
along a road, you can generally count on the other cars travelling in one of two directions - as in, the same way as you (in which case they are either behind you or in front of you) or in the opposite direction (in which case they should also be travelling
in the opposite lane to you.) Let's not complicate my argument by talking about overtaking, or dual carriageways or roundabouts. Most of the time driving along the roads follows clear rules and regulations as laid down by that much-revered publication The
Highway Code. There is, I have to report, no Highway Code in the supermarket.
Trolleys, pushed by weary customers looking to complete their shop in the shortest possible time, weave around us and across us,
littl'uns dart in front of us, behind us, and chase us through the coffee, tea and hot chocolate aisle. A touch of the Dodgems would help but then you are allowed to collide with other cars in that most popular fairground ride - hence the nickname "bumper
cars." There may not be a Highway Code in operation in Sainsbury's but I rather suspect that if we had played Dodgems in the Fresh Meat aisle, our chariot would have been unplugged forthwith and we would have been sent home in disgrace.
On the way home we agreed that it had not been half as enjoyable as we thought it would be. If we ventured out again, then it would have to be at a time when we were the only shoppers in the store. A clear highway, that's what we needed.
In the evening we watched England play Wales in the Rugby World Cup. Sadly it seems Mr B was not alone having trouble with his Chariot of Fire.