Buy One Get One Free

by Claire Jefferson

In the battleship grey of full blown May we return to our native Wales, sailing back in time to a previous life. Breaching the slant rain in our pervious slacks, we flap into the steamy allure of a jostling Morrisons.

The stacked shelves blazon their loyalty, bargain with bounty, seduce with sincerity; a trove of temptation levelled as high as the want in an eye. Sticky-wheeled trolleys piled like junks, chicane the aisles, shoved by harried mothers who ply their wheedling kids with sweeteners because ‘NO,’ is not on offer today.

Cross shoppers gridlock the intersections. We gird our loins, scan the gantries, charter a course. Head south down Cereal, veer west up Tinned Goods, scud on past Condiments and Spices to dock in the limpid haven of Wines and Spirits.

Dripping a sea of puddles, we buoy ourselves with a bottle of french bubbles, haul up a vessel or two from Bordeaux, a boost of salty snacks, and breast the streaming checkout.

’If you come back next week,’ says the jolly cashier, ‘these Merlotts will be two for one.’ I glance past her uniform-green and pleasant bearing to the cold-plate window, drizzled with seasoned rain, peppered with slogans and promises;

‘BOGOF?’ is the best I have to offer.

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