Shoulda Coulda Woulda

I was shopping again. I know, I know. I won’t keep going on about supermarkets, but let me relay this quickie…

I buy most of the shopping in this house -for 2 adults and 2 children. As I was finishing up, I passed by the drinks area and noticed some Polish beer I had bought previously. Knowing I had one bottle of same already at home I thought I might as well buy another. As Noah himself used to say, “Pair the beers”.

(Yes, I’m not sad enough to buy beer one bottle at a time thankyouverymuch. I do already have other types of beer in the house -not a vast selection or anything, but probably enough for a person or two to last a night if need be, if they didn’t mind mixing & matching & possibly swigging a can or two out of date towards the end of the evening. But this was a kind of ‘specialty beer’ and I only wanted one more).

So I come to the til and pile up my items on the belt. Hellos are exchanged. I was busy packing when the lady at the register says “oh we’re not allowed serve alcohol until after 10:30am”. She raised the bottle in the air and with a smile lifted it away out of reach and out of sight before I even had time to react.
“Oh right fair enough,” says I, thinking no more of it. I was busy packing, I told you. It’s not as if I was rushing out to slug it down in the car park. It was cold out there.

So I pay for the shopping, go outside, pack up the car, return the trolley and get back in the car. I’m driving out the gate of the centre when I notice the time on the clock… 10:33.

Now I am angry. I recall the assistant’s face as she carted away the bottle and I see it as if for the first time. Now I am certain it wasn’t a smile of politeness, but a big fat smug “gotcha!” for crimes I had no idea I was committing. It couldn’t have been any earlier than 10:28 when she waved that solitary beer across the sky above her head like an animated prohibitive Liberty. If I had realised it at the time -if my brain was at all engaged- I would have gladly smiled back and said “No problem, I’ll wait,” and remain in place, shopping unpaid, queue gathering behind me for the one or two minutes it would have taken. Hell, I’d have given it five minutes. More if she protested. I would have really enjoyed that. It would have made my day in fact.

Instead I have only this gnawing, nagging frustration at my own stoopidity and only this non-blog to help me appease it. Have you ever had a maddening moment that you didn’t realise you had until it was too late?

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