Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Painsburys Local

PAINSBURYS LOCAL 4.30pm – My third visit today.

I push the buggy through the automatic doors and within seconds I make eye contact with a Mum on her way out. She has a bag of shopping and a crying toddler in each hand, her face is bright red and her shoulders are up by her ears, through gritted teeth she says to me

'Good luck in there’.

Anxious now, my mind flashes back to an episode of 'Supernanny' I watched four years ago, I need to get down to my children’s level and tell them what I expect from the shopping trip. I will then engage them in fun activities like ‘Who can find a yellow fruit?’  Right!! I turn towards them.

Where the f**ck are they?

My son has taken charge of the basket trolley and is driving it enthusiastically down Aisle 1, my daughter is running alongside desperately trying to get a tub of humous in there and is getting more and more worked up …She REALLY loves humous.


Too late she has thrown the tub of humous and herself on to the floor and my son is helping to block the aisle with the trolley. No-one can get past us.  I lift MissChief (Who is sobbing ‘My humous!’ over and over again) and somehow manage to strap her thrashing self into the buggy. I take the trolley from my son and get a basket. I promise myself I will do an on line weekly shop from now on.

‘Mummy? Do you need cucumber?’ My Lil man asks sweetly.  ‘No thank-you’ I say. ‘Ok then Mummy I will go and get cucumber' and he walks off purposefully.   He returns with his arms full of cucumbers and drops them into the basket, happy that he has finished his shopping he jumps on the buggy board and announces he would like to go home RIGHT NOW.

Unable to hang the basket off the buggy I am now having to push the basket (full of cucumbers) with my foot. Aisle 2, there is someone restocking the tinned fruit so I can’t get past.  Aisle 3, I grab some pesto and pasta and try and head towards the checkout but its 4.30 in the afternoon and there is a crowd of harassed looking Mums chatting near the fish finger section, the only other way is the wine aisle so I don’t stand a chance. I take a short cut down the sweet and chocolate aisle and as I do, drop a king size bar of dairy milk into the basket on the floor with Ninja like speed so they don’t notice.  They notice.

‘Mummy what’s that?’

‘Just a packet of vegetables darling’

They look at me suspiciously as we reach the SELF SERVICE CHECK OUT.

‘THERE IS AN UNIDENTIFIED ITEM IN THE BAGGING AREA' my son is sitting ON the bagging area grinning at me. On top of the basket of cucumbers I notice five pepper pig lollies and a random avocado.

'PLEASE REMOVE ITEM FROM THE BAGGING AREA' I pick him up and he wonders off to the self-service next to us where a child-free lady is calmly purchasing her goods without any need for assistance.

'PLEASE REMOVE ITEM FROM BAGGING AREA' Jesus! I move him from her ‘bagging area’ and apologise.


This machine wants me to have a breakdown

'DARLING' I say through gritted teeth 'the machine doesn't work if you lean on it. PLEASE STOP IT!

I scan the Pesto.


Why machine do you hate me?

I turn as I hear a stressed mother saying to her child in a fierce whisper 'Stay off the bagging area or the machine will get very angry'


In hysterical whisper ‘No I DO NOT have my OWN bag’

My son is saying ‘Mummy Mummy Mummy?’ as he is feeding coin after coin that he has found in the buggy pocket into the receipt slot. I am ON .THE .VERGE and search for a brown paper bag to breathe into.

'PLEASE WAIT FOR ASSISTANCE' I want to shout at the machine to ‘Shut Up’ but my son is now feeding my library card into the slot and is STILL trying to tell me something.

'Don’t worry Mummy, we can get fish and chips and sit on the green’

The boy is a genius, I turn to my suspiciously quiet daughter ‘What do you think?’
Through a mouthful of Pepper Pig chocolate complete with shiny wrapper she smiles ‘Let’s go Mummy.’

As we abandon the crazed machine and apologetically hand our weird basket of shopping to a shop assistant we race towards the exit.

She laughs and calls after me...'Bye Lydia see you tomorrow!’

Rookie Mistakes


  1. This is the most I have laughed in ages! Fantastic material your kids provide you with! I hate those effing machines.

  2. This is the most I have laughed in ages! Fantastic material your kids provide you with! I hate those effing machines.

    1. Thank-you! Why oh why do I not do on-line shopping!? Will I never learn? :)