|Helpful tip: try to avoid cracks, puddles and cars.|
Last night I told my wife I was going Christmas shopping. I have to confess that she has done almost everything on that front. But I console myself with the fact that I'm the hunter/gatherer and she is the...spender; what did cave women do in their spare time?
So I took the advice of an expert, I didn't wear clothing that would make me too warm as I walked around shops (no 'jumper'/'sweater'), took the train (no parking issues), and did a bit of planning before I set off.
But I didn't reckon on it being Thursday night, not a Saturday afternoon. This means two things: I'd been at work all day so I was spent before I was spending and, as only the desperate shop at that time of night it wasn't so busy, and a third thing (which has just popped into my head making this a very long sentence) is that it is colder in the night (didn't you know).
So, I found I was cold, was sent back and forth by sales assistants to their 'other store' across the city, wondered what the rest of the shoppers were doing at home who were supposed to be out there with me, and...it was raining and my shoes were NOT waterproof, it turns out. In fact, I could feel the bit that was coming apart at the sole with every step.
And when I say raining, I mean raining in the West of Scotland kind of way. I looked like a child avoiding the cracks as I tried desperately to find a bit of the pavement without a puddle.
So I got home exhausted at about 13 hours after I'd first left it in the morning.
Now, here's a question: is this really what some women call a hobby?
But I have to concede what a joy a bookstore can be. Let's here it for the Waterstone store that soldiers on against the online onslaught. It seems to be the only major one left in town. You stand there, not a puddle in sight, the assistants approach you to help in a friendly way and you get lost reading a very interesting book in a section and forget what you came for.
I did my bit to support them- but what I did has to remain a surprise!