Till you drop
I’ve just been shopping. Yes shopping. Remember that? No? Ok, it goes like this: you leave your home – legally without being arrested – and proceed to another building that is not your home. Yup, I know it sounds really odd. You are allowed to enter it if you are wearing a mask.
You can get to this other building on foot, by bike, by car, by train or by bus. At the moment you can’t get to it by aeroplane as foreign travel is still prohibited unless there are certain specific conditions, and shopping isn’t one of them.
Now this other building is not on its own. It is found in a street alongside other buildings that all have a particular purpose: to sell you something non-essential. You get the idea I’m sure.
The fact is that I went to buy something that I consider essential but have nevertheless had to wait for. Sometime in the winter I came home from yet another long walk to find one foot had developed a blister. All was revealed once I inspected the relevant walking boot. The interior lining had in effect disintegrated and was rubbing at key points. No amount of my partner’s ingenuity with a tube of silicon could repair it – and Dame V knows how this is one of his key skills.
So that was that. There are many items of clothing you can buy online with very little risk of them not fitting, but walking boots are not one of them. So today was the day; we headed off to a High Street outdoor shoes and clothing shop, and an assistant, – no, not a message bar that pops up in the corner of your screen asking if an invisible being can respond to your request – a real person helped me choose and purchase a pair of comfortable new walking boots of which I am inordinately proud.
It didn’t stop there. This shopping lark is addictive. I remembered that I did not have a pair of jeans without a hole in the knee. Fact. Cue for moving on to another shop that sold indoor clothing, where I found a pair of jeans that looked like they would fit me. I did have to take them home to try them on and check and unfortunately they did not. Bring back the changing room, please.
So that makes one essential purchase – if I am to continue taking long walks – and one that could be considered essential if I am not to look like a vagrant or would-be teenager with torn jeans. Erm..I did say that shopping is habit forming? Somehow I found myself in a third shop eyeing Spring coats at knock down prices. There was just one in my size. I bought it and my cup runneth over.
I guess that’s retail therapy for you, and for me that feels like quite enough for the time being. Do try shopping – something tells me it’s going to catch on. And please do write in and tell us of your extraordinary post-lockdown experiences.