Thursday, December 23, 2010

Not Quite Mafeking.

The relief was palpable. At 10am I was in despair- the third taxi had said they were too busy to come and pick me up. I phoned Jackie and she gave me hers and her daughter’s taxi list. It’s all very well for MTL to say we’ll manage, but Christmas with no milk for tea and no fresh fruit and vegetables is a hardship I’d rather avoid. Finally a kind man from ‘Grab a Taxi’ said he was on his way.

I walked gingerly to the corner of the lane and waited and waited. At last he came and had the greatest difficulty turning round and then we met a neighbour in the lane – so more manoeuvring - but he was a professional. MTL had pointed out that I could well get stuck in the town with mounds of shopping and no return taxi. It’s the custom in friendly Somerset to sit in the front with the driver, so it was easy to have a heart to heart, and we arranged exactly where he would pick me up – actually sitting inside the Co-op, and he worked out the time on my watch which is always 10 minutes fast – and so very confusing, but MTL is kind enough to adjust every time the clocks change.

I knew he wouldn’t let me down because he said to pay him at the end. I had about 50 minutes but got everything except fresh thyme, flowers and cotton wool pads (I got balls instead). The flowers looked lovely but the trolley was bulging and I needed to allow time to pay and pack because the taxi driver had to drive to Taunton later.

At the check out there was the sweetest boy cub who asked if I would like help packing. I told him I’d love it and between us we filled many bags – some of which I had brought and I gave the check out lady a treat by buying one of hers – not something I do lightly. I told the sweet boy I couldn’t have managed without him and made some ’kerchings’ in the tin on the counter, having made sure it was his.

I joined two other old dears sitting with laden trolleys for their dates. It’s good to know the drivers are used to putting the bags in the car giving you time to return the trolley and collect the £1 deposit. The driver told me it was lucky I hadn’t gone to Tesco as some of his customers had phoned to delay him as they were still queuing at the check out.

When we reached home at last, he asked if I needed any help and I told him I was older than I look and yes please. By the way I had an odd feeling yesterday which stopped me going out but when I heard there had been an earth quake in the Lake District I remembered the sensation was just what I felt in a surprise quake in Greece. Global warming no doubt.


kenju said...

I am so glad to know that you found an agreeable and helpful taxi driver. I doubt I could find one here.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Pat!

Pat said...

Judy: thank you and the same to you. See you at that game I can't spell:)

angryparsnip said...

I know you all are so snowed in but it is so hard to really understand when we will have sunshine and temps in the 70 ...
We did get some rain last night so there is much dancing in the streets here !
So glad you found the great taxi...

Merry Christmas Pat !

cheers, parsnip

rashbre said...

Glad to hear you have the supplies in.

It's a bit manic around here as everyone is on their last minute shopping errands.

Of course, I'd forgotten the Selotape and had to make a special run to get some.

Pat said...

Parsnip: sunshine! Don't rub it in. Happy Christmas to you and yours;)

Rashbre: it is a relief as food is one of the unalloyed joys left to us.
I should think the big stores in more civilised place are manic. Now why would you need Selotape I wonder?

Z said...

People are so kind. And you respond to them, which makes them happy in return. And how lovely of the driver to suggest you pay later, to reassure you. Pat, I do get fed up with people who only see negative things, because if you are friendly and polite and see people as individuals, then you get a good response nearly every time. I've very rarely found anyone to be really mean or unkind.

Milk and fresh fruit and veg are things it's very hard to manage without. I taught my children to cultivate a taste for black coffee and tea, but I couldn't do without greens!

R. Sherman said...

The Christmas season does bring out the best in people, I think. As for all your snow, just keep your fire lit.

Merry Christmas, dear and


Eryl said...

Oh, thank goodness! The hamper looks lovely but I was thinking it's more treat than sustenance. Now I hope you have everything you need to have a jolly good Christmas and happy start to the year, X

Kim Ayres said...

Well for one of your smiles, I'm not surprised boys and men were being extra helpful :)

Pat said...

Z: yes I think we think alike about many things but I can be a harridan too. Lucky you should be the last person to run out of fruit and veg.

Randall: thank you and the same to you and the family.

Eryl: yes we're all set to go and looking forward to an old fashioned Christmas dinner followed by the Queen's speech.

Kim: you are shameless - but I forgive you;)

savannah said...

you darling woman! i just want you to know you popped into my mind while i was buying vegetables at market yesterday, so i'm glad to hear you made it to the shops! happy christmas and i know your dinner will be lovely! xoxoxoxo

Pat said...

Savannah: I'm hoping yours will be especially good this year and all best wishes to you and yours.xoxoxox

Guyana-Gyal said...

I am so relieved!

I kept thinking about this, about you two being snowed in with not much food.

I'm off to bed, g'night x x

Oh, word verification: resto.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

I am so glad you were able to get to the store, my dear...I have been thinking about you rather stranded there....And how GOOD that you finally got a nice Taxi man.....It certainly seems that life gets harder and harder as the years pass...One is so grateful for the little kindnesses that we used to take for granted, but now, come so infrequently---The World Moves So Fast! To have some milk for tea...HOORAY!

My Dear Dear Pat....I want to wish you and your sweet MTL A Very Very Merry Christmas, milk, and all!