Thursday, February 21, 2008

Shopping shennanigans

I hate shopping when I need to buy something. I know that sounds daft, but isn't it just so annoying when there's one particular thing you really need? It's guaranteed not to turn up anywhere you look.

Today I went on a shopping mission:
- duck tape, to fix a hole in a waterproof coat
- batteries for my bike light
- a screwdriver to open said bike light
- a frying pan

Now I know you can get most of these things in supermarkets nowadays, but I resent the idea of paying to get a bus to a supermarket when they're really simple everyday items.

I'm off the old-fashioned opinion that there should be specific shops for specific things - butcher, baker, candlestick-maker - you get the idea. That said, these things just don't exist where you need them. Rather hypocritically, I also find it incredibly convenient to have a variety of things in a shop. I know I could go to Walton Street Cycles for a bike light, but I'm not so sure they stock batteries or screwdrivers.

Back home I would go to Woolies for things like batteries, Homebase for a screwdriver, the cooking shop for a frying pan. But, shock, horror, central Oxford has no Woolworths! There are rumours of one lurking in Cowley, but I was left puzzling over just where I could go.

Luckily Boswells stepped in. I always thought it was quite expensive in there, but it was really cheap: a non-stick frying pan reduced from £20 to £7.50, eight AAA batteries for £3 and a screwdriver for 75p. All under one roof. Hurray! It might not have the colourful plastic toys and Pick'n'Mix of Woolies, but it was fun looking at the kitchen gadgets (table-top hoovers with faces on anyone?), the women there were very friendly and I felt quite posh walking amongst £100+ toasters.

So that's it. My useful shop out of the way. Now I can concentrate on not looking for anything in particular. I think I might pop back in and look at their fluffy cushions...

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