Today the bright yellow signs of ‘Pak n Save’ beckoned me into its car park, pointed out a nice wee parking spot, guided me to an easy to free trolley, and gave me a standing ovation as the automated doors zhummed open. I was greeted with promises of super cheap chocolate, washing powder, dishwashing liquid, and toilet paper. Perfect housewife luring products.
I had every intention of taking a trip to the cheapest supermarket chain, but I had quickly forgotten how amazingly cheap it was. Basically I was usually content with visiting my local more expensive supermarket, which not only has wine for wine emergencies, but always has the satisfactory promise of eye candy.
I navigated the bustling aisles with my mega trolley big enough to fit ten toddlers. Sale here, sale there, it was hard to stop my arm reflex from turning into a rampaging crane. I put my blinkers on when I went past the cheeses though, to avoid taking home a whole cheesery (new name for a cheese factory, care of flatmate), but ‘oh cheesus’ the pungent aromas wafted through their tightly wrapped packets and tickled my nose hairs. I also tried not to judge the larger lady taking advantage of the super chocolate specials.
The fruit and vegetables glistened, and the meat looked like that if it could smile it would’ve. But hey, it did smile at one stage before it became slabs of steak, racks and breasts. I was simply just happy to cruise along the aisles amidst the haste, and admire all of its delights. Even a baby cheekily grinned at me.
Then I got stuck in the bakery department. Not just stuck, but I lost a good ten minutes of my life in there. Eying up the loaves and feeling up the croissants. It was pure bliss. Then I snapped out of it and became more cautious in my aisle selections.
But really not cautious enough, when I hastily grabbed the ‘can’t just eat a few but have to eat the whole bag’ Doritos, and then mysteriously found myself in the wine aisle. A little halo glistened above each bottle, as they sung rock ballads and chorused ‘Hallelujah!’ Another ten minutes of my life escaped, and so did two bottles – into my trolley.
I was nearing the end of my experience, zig zagging my way through impatient shoppers parked up ready to be checked out. A three year old was in the throes of every parent’s worst nightmare – the full-blown public tantrum. Impatient shoppers tried to avoid staring, while other mothers with young children were thanking god it wasn’t them as their angels cheerily smiled. The mum of temporary devil-child handled it really well, with a calm but affirmative voice while standing her ground, while the howling echoed through to the car park.
The end of my experience was topped with a long queue. But I really didn’t mind. It gave me the chance to feel fabulous for not giving into the checkout treats and reflect on the fact that I had rediscovered my love of supermarket shopping.