It must be great to grow up today, you can do everything your mum does, and it is all sized up for you. The supermarket trolleys that we all know are now scale models for the kiddies. After all they have to learn how to do it properly, it is part of their education.
I was spared the experience as a kid because supermarkets were only just appearing in the fifties. Mum had an old fashioned bag. “2 lbs of King Edwards” she would say at the potato stall along the road. Why the Brits had to name all the potato sorts after the Kings of England I do not know. There followed a conversation with the stall owner, who was almost a member of the family as he saw me and mum almost every day. and that was my shopping experience as a kid. I did not have to practice how to do it, it would just come naturally.
However in the process of me growing up, stall bought produce had to make room for the newly imported ideas of the supermarket. I am not sure how or why, but I am convinced it travels across the pond from America and the King Edwards and King Georges disappeared for the potatoes packed in plastic bags or perhaps they are now known as President Trumps and Eisenhowers.
And today we choose our potatoes from the shelves in the supermarket. It is so easy, even a kid could do it, if they could reach the shelves. We make it easier for them. Supermarket trolleys are now child sized. They can shop just like mummy, although mummy still chooses the products because she can reach to the top shelf. Little boys and girls now strut around in the supermarkets with their trolleys filled with the produce that mummy chooses. Mummy no longer needs a trolley, the kids are learning to be grown ups.
As an innocent witness of this procedure I am not very happy when I turn a corner and a 6-7 year old struts into my legs with the miniature metal carriage. Does he or she apologise? Of course not, I am a hindrance to the further education of the children. At their tender age they are learning to do the shopping just like mum, although where is mum. She is having a conversation with the neighbour who also has time as her children are also making the supermarket a precarious location for golden oldies.
It all seems to be part of growing up today, to be like mummy. How sweet, look Johnny has filled his trolley with 10 packets of various sweets and has now placed a copy of the Beano or Dandy on top, his favourite comic. Mum will only discover the sweets at the till, but no problem, it is all part of growing up in today’s world and learning how to do it. Even the kids pay with mummy’s credit card, although the lady at the till often gets annoyed when they have to type the codes 3-4 times until it succeeds. Do kids know what real money looks like, or are they convinced it is just play plastic? In the meanwhile I am still rubbing my foot where it shows the impression of a wheel and other golden oldies are steadying themselves after almost being bowled over by a runaway trolley.