So I thought I would pop into Sainsbury’s; just a few things – a box of cereal, some toothpaste, a bottle of wine for a dinner party that evening and maybe some cat food. I could manage that – I had the baby in the Björn, an overstuffed changing bag and the portable breastfeeding pillow, but an extra carrier bag would be fine. No drama.
But then again it made sense to get dinner for the next night, we were out in the afternoon and a friend was coming round for dinner – there would be no time tomorrow to buy it. And maybe something for the next night, just for us.
Alex Reid manxplaining how it’s done
And fruit. I’m not eating enough fruit – Elphie will be suffering from a lack of good vitamins (cookies apparently lacking in them). And I needed cookies obviously – might as well get two bags for diversity, as it is important to taste test whether Taste the Difference Milk Chocolate Cookies are better than the Taste the Difference Chunky Belgian Chocolate Shortbread (they aren’t).
Then we need bread, and maybe some bagels, and as we are getting bagels then some smoked salmon (I forgot the philadelphia!).
And Fred really likes having orange juice at breakfast. Why not add another heavy bottle to the mix?
One box of Sultana Bran is never enough, let’s make that two.
Hmmm… This is too much for one basket, need trolley. If I need a trolley does this mean I will have problems carrying it back by myself? Should I drop the basket off at customer services and go and get my car? Nah… It’ll be fine, I’ve carried this much shopping before.
Oh – we need detergent, because although I am not convinced the Colour stuff makes any difference whatsoever, I am too chicken not to use it.
The wine… We had this Cabernet Sauvignon recently, The Usual Suspect, and it went down well so I popped it in the trolley and advanced to the till.
All my shopping out on the conveyor and I start to have second thoughts. Does the label on The Usual Suspects make it unbecoming for a sophisticated dinner party? Should I get something that looks more refined? Panic. Run (well canter with Elphie on my front and changing bag etc flowing behind me) back to the wine section and choose the Ravenswood Lodi Old Vine Zinfandel, an old favourite of ours with a pleasingly refined label.
Luckily the checkout lady must have been in a friendly type mood and offered to help pack up. I needed everything in four bags if I had a hope of carrying it all, but it didn’t quite fit so had to improvise with a bottle of wine inside the breastfeeding pillow case, another in the changing bag and a bunch of bananas in there too for good measure!
Then the time came to abandon my friend the trolley and make it on our own. We started out ok – the bags were balanced on the trolley park so they were easier to pick up and off we went.
The journey to the bus stop was one of resilience. I couldn’t stop and drop the bags because they would be difficult to pick up again from the ground, so just had to soldier on with my cargo. Finally I made it!
A woman must have noticed me making a meal out of my journey down the high street because she offered to help me onto the bus! With the spaces with shopping storage full, she piled me and my shopping into two seats, whence I rode penned in by my shopping.
I felt guilty as the bus got busier and my shopping continued to take up a space, but there wasn’t really anywhere for it to go and I couldn’t easily move even if I had wanted to! I realised this was going to be a bit of a problem when I reached my stop – I simply didn’t have the space to manoeuvre myself and the shopping out of the seats in a way that would allow me to pick it up again.
So I did the sensible thing that all mothers tackling public transport should do – I asked a random stranger to help. In this case an unsuspecting bloke who was also getting off and who probably thought he was safe from incursions from the world around him through his wearing of headphones.
So slightly perplexed but willing to help, we successfully exited and laden down once again I made the short walk home.
Next time I’m taking the car…