Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Lisbon tram

Every now and then, google arranges their logo into a design to commemorate a milestone or anniversary in Portugal.  Today's celebrates the 110th anniversary of the Lisbon tram - it's a rather charming design, don't you think?

Monday, 8 August 2011

On shopping anxiety

I’m not really a shopper or very good at seeking out bargains but I do love shopping trips with a friend.  Or my aunt, her friend and my friend.  These trips are fun because I’m not really looking for anything specific and not too bothered if I don’t go home with nothing more than a hug at the end of the day.

However, I loathe supermarket shopping and put it off as much as possible.  This usually means by the time I do go, I need two or three trolleys to cope with all the stuff I need to re-stock my completely bare kitchen cupboards and at least a couple of people to help wheel them back to the car.
I notice the dismayed face of anyone who has the misfortune to end up behind us at the checkout.  Then, in the car park, folks in their cars who are desperately looking for a space, think twice before waiting for us to unload the three trolleys of shopping into the boot and saunter on with a look of ‘I didn’t want to park there anyway’.  I mouth to them ‘don’t have kids or this will be you’ sort of thing.

I’ve done the supermarket shopping online and had it delivered.  This works quite well, of course, and saves time.  Sort of.  I find it challenging because I dither over quantities and whether I’m really ordering the right product and it ends up taking a lot longer than actually going to the supermarket and shop live and in person.

Another quandary I find myself in when I shop online is I’m always sure I’ve forgotten something.  I don’t worry about this when I’m physically in the supermarket as I go around spotting items that I’m sure we need and promptly stock up.  The truth is that when I get home I find we are already well stocked and that is the reason the item wasn’t on the list.  Instead, I’ve completely overlooked a very important item which had its rightful place on the list and this will then warrant a trip to the local shop to stock up.  I should probably just stick to shopping there on a daily basis.  It would relieve me of my shopping anxiety at least and the shopkeeper would be more than happy to see a boost in his profits I’m sure.

Once the ‘in person’ shopping at the supermarket or the online version is over I feel a huge sense of relief.  Until I see the kitchen and hall floor covered in carrier bags and boxes.  Groan!  Now I have to put it all away.  This chore seems to be beyond any other member of the family.  They know exactly which cupboard to go to when they need to help themselves to the biscuits, coffee, tea, sugar, breakfast cereal, baked beans, tinned tuna… but somehow their memory fails when it comes to just putting anything back let alone remember where to store away the shopping.  On the odd occasion when, for one reason or another I don’t do it, the shopping stays in the bags on the floor for days.  Apparently, the family just loves to rummage through the bags looking for whatever rather than open a cupboard door.  

So why am I rambling on about this?  Well, much to my surprise, my hub said we should buy a barcode scanner and every time we took something out of the cupboard, we could scan it.  When we needed to go shopping, all we had to do was download the list on to the computer and print it out.  For a moment, I thought it was a brilliant idea.  However, I seriously doubt any of us would remember to use it, especially the kids, so I’d be back to square one.  Well I would be a proud owner of a barcode scanner sitting in a cupboard alongside the tuna.