Before we moved to Mallorca, all our food shopping was done at the local Sainsbury’s. One clean sweep through the aisles on a Saturday morning and we were sorted until the next weekend. Working long hours at the Beeb during the week, I didn’t want to spend one of my two precious days off visiting markets and individual food shops for the weekly necessities.
Living on the island, though, we’ve discovered the pleasure of buying our fresh produce in the small shops and market in our nearest town. We regularly scour the well-stocked market stalls for the freshest fruit and vegetables (most of which are locally grown), share a bit of Spanish banter with the traders we know, and then have coffee at a favourite café in the square.
As our shopping trip progresses, The Boss begins to take on the appearance of an overburdened donkey (minus the hairy ears), with bulging straw baskets hanging from each shoulder. Being a true gentleman, he refuses to let me share the load, but always has a whinge about having to carry the stuff. But his reaction when I suggested a possible solution? No way was he going to use one of those shopping trolleys.
Granted, I wouldn’t personally have been seen with one on the streets of Oxfordshire – even if I’d been heavily disguised – but I look around any Mallorcan town or village and there are plenty of women (and some men) of all ages using them. There’s no apparent stigma attached to using them here – and why should there be when they make shopping easier and less tiring? In fact, they could almost be seen as something of a status symbol, saying far more about you than a clutch of splitting Mercadona carrier bags. And, on that note, they’re also better for the environment.
Like cars, there’s a range to suit all tastes and budgets: choice of fabrics; two or four-wheeled; some with brakes; some with optional thermal side pockets – perfect when shopping for fish or a secret stash of Magnums (the ice creams, not the guns). Perhaps the Rolls Royce of shopping trolleys is the Rolser. Say it quickly and “Mine’s a Rolser” has something of a ring about it, don’t you think? Unlike cars, you don’t need a licence, though experience suggests that some trolley-owning folks could use a few ‘driving’ lessons.
So, in the interests of becoming more like Mallorcans, I might just invest in a shopping trolley.
Clear a path . . . coming through!
Jan Edwards ©