Monday, 4 January 2010

Unlooked for compliments down the frozen food aisle

I think I should be paid to go shopping. I mean I provide hours of entertainment up and down the aisles with my youngest in tow. Today I was caught in the middle of “The Dam Busters” theme tune as I sped up the frozen food aisle and about to do a massive halt and turn at the top by an elegant middle aged lady in a warm woolly hat.
Her: I do love seeing you and your boys shopping.
Me: !??%$£&!”
Her: You always seem to be having so much fun and you sing a lot.
Me: Ohmygod I am so sorry. I don’t mean to do it but…
Her: No no really it always makes my day to see happy people. It’s wonderful, really.
At this stage I am not sure whether I want to laugh, cry or just wish the floor to open up and swallow me. I had no idea I had a reputation or that in fact anyone even knew me in Waitrose. It’s just as well the branch I go to is 12 miles from home.
I suppose today I was rather loud. Bog Boy had his own little ‘Flag Trolley’, as he calls it, and we were both whizzing up and down the aisles and trying to spin at the top. I don’t think you can do this in Tesco because there’s not enough room to do that but Waitrose believes in making the shop seem spacious and calm (until we turn up obviously) so the top aisle that runs across is much wider than that found at Tesco or indeed Sainsbury’s; I’m not sure about Asda or Morrison’s because I haven’t shopped in either of them for years.
Anyway, all would have been OK if Bog Boy hadn’t kept bumping into me. Now when one of those trolleys comes at you and rams into your Achilles heel you yell – loudly! He did it three times.
Despite that we shopped quite companionably chattering away and singing. He tells me what he doesn’t like and I tell him well tough it’s not for you anyway. He then tells me what he does like and I still say tough without thinking and then we have a stand off. Through a series of threats, ultimatums, distraction techniques (hence the singing) and bribery we eventually get round the store. Along the way there are a variety of one liners for the grown ups so they don’t think I am a complete lunatic. I usually get a laugh or smile but there again perhaps they do think I am a lunatic and are just doing it to placate me…
However, no one has ever said anything to me before and to say I was taken aback would be an understatement. I mean we’re British, we’re in Britain and people don’t volunteer compliments to strangers do they? So I was flummoxed, taken off guard and momentarily quiet. At that point Bog Boy joined us smiled up at the lady and promptly told her he had got a remote controlled racing car for Christmas and then told me he wanted sausages and could he eat them in the car?
I looked at the proffered package of uncooked chipolatas and said I’d need to cook them first. He handed them to me and then said he’d have crisps instead and that he wanted a drink.
Me: Oh heaven’s he’s worse than his father!
Her: Don’t worry they all are! Just remember they are apprentice men: genetically challenged!
And with a cheery wave she disappeared in the other direction to the check out till.
By this time Bog Boy was off down the cereal aisle and I had to play catch up feeling rather light headed and happy. Needless to say Bog Boy got what he wanted!


Mud in the City said...

How wonderful - Waitrose Fame!

My recent country sojourn involved a long cliff top walk with every complete stranger passing the time of day. Delightful! My very citified friend, over from Hong Kong was utterly perplexed and downright scared. "All this talking to strangers - it is just not right!"

Preseli Mags said...

I believe that shopping is only that much fun in Waitrose. We get quite giddy when exposed to the delights of the Abergavenny branch. I'm not sure if Tesco and Morrisons make people look miserable or whether only miserable people shop there. I think it is wonderful that your fun shopping exploits have been recognised. Let us know when there's a fan club!

Expat mum said...

Oh you should come out with me - the 6 year old practically accosts people and if they make eye contact, they're toast. He can go on for hours. You'd think no one ever spoke to him at home. Actually, we don't speak to him much because we're usually the captive audience.

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

It's a public service you're providing .You made her day , the two of you !!
My children used to talk strangers to death . Now my grandson is doing it . Perhaps it is genetic mother did it too . Me ?
P.S. The word verification is shifit . Roughly what I'll be saying if I don't get the supper out of the oven now .

Ladybird World Mother said...

I love it... apprentice men! so glad that someone sings in supermarkets too... we should go shopping together... duets in Waitrose, accompanied by our children. ANYTHING to make shopping more interesting! x

elizabethm said...

Took three year old grandson out for a pizza to very nice italian restaurant. Nice waiter attempts to talk to him in friendly fashion. He says "You look like a toilet" (not true). Is it any wonder I am still up?

Pam said...

I always pass comments to people who make my day- god knows there are enough of them who try and spoil it!! Sing on Tattie!!

Rob-bear said...

That's just delightful!

Christmas time, and I sing or whistle along with the carols being played in the stores. More than once I've got a complement on my whistling — of all things! (I'm told that whistling is becoming a lost art. Sigh!)

And I guess I'm still an apprentice man, because I haven't got it right, yet.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

When they go shopping with you, they usually do get what they want, it makes it a whole lot easier. Not to mention more expensive!!

CJ xx

Jenny Holden said...

Yay, there are other crazy people in the world :-D

My dad and I have always been silly in the supermarket together. Mam used to pretend to roll her eyes at us but I know she enjoyed our games really. Now I'm 28 we still can't resist a bit of a double act, especially at the checkout. Some days we get a laugh or smile in return; some days folk just look scared! I live a long way away now so we have to make up for lost time when we get chance.

blackbird said...

How wonderful to be notorious for being happy and fun.

Tattie Weasle said...

I am a total shocker of late - Apolgies!
Mud - I'm trying to get used to it myself and of course the notoriety!
Preseli Mags - Waitrose does have the certain je ne sais quoi - it also has that library feel where you know you just have to shout!
Expat Mum - is it just 6 eyars olds then? Or just ours!!!!
SmitoniusAndSonata - omigod it is - My mother was always singing! In fact it got rather embarrassing by the time I was 10...

Go on you know you want to...


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