Monday, 7 March 2011

One of Those Faces

I have one of those faces that people talk to. Random People will start Random Conversations with me at Random Moments. Generally, I don't mind. Generally, I am more than happy to share a little Human Moment Time in my day, because these moments usually end in a smile, a laugh, or getting a jar of something or other from the top shelf in the supermarket for a vertically challenged little old lady.

So today I nipped into the supermarket on my way home from work to get the weekly shop. Luckily I didn't have a repeat of last week's 'ticket-flung-from-the-machine-under-my-car-and-into-a-puddle' debacle, as the barrier was broken and cars were able to enter the car park uninhibited by a psycho ticket machine. I parked up, I did my shopping, I bought some lemon grass because I am going to have a bash at growing some at home. I am a new convert to lemon grass. Much to Heather's chagrin, who isn't such a lemon grass fan, I am starting to throw it into all sorts of dishes, and as it is rather expensive to buy, and according to the Interwebbly, it should be quite easy to start off from a stalk, I'm having a go in order to save a quid or two. I'll let you know how it goes - lush lemon grass abundance or soggy smelly mush in a jar.

And as I went through the check-out, the cashier lady started commenting upon my purchases.

'They're lovely big cooking apples,' she said, which is true because they were absolute whoppers. 'What are you going to do with those?'

'Well, ' I said, 'I am going to make a red cabbage and apple casserole.' And as I packed I sketched a few brief details about how to make a red cabbage and apple casserole.'

'That sounds lovely,' said the cashier. And then, 'Oooh, sweet potatoes. What do you do with those? Roast them?'

'You can do,' I said. 'But I mix them with onion, basil, spinach and ricotta and roll them all up in some filo pastry to make a savoury streudel.'

The cashier lady looked at me like I had just expounded the fool-proof method to achieving eternal youth.

'Really? That sounds delicious,' she said.
'It is,' I said. 'Hot and cold.'

We were nearing the end of my journey through the check-out and I was aware the queue behind were listening for the next recipe.

'And what about this?' she said, waving the lemon grass.
'Thai green curry,' I said. 'Chop it and mix it with a couple of shallots, some freshly grated ginger, coconut milk and soy sauce. Chuck some sweet potato, broccoli, peas and beans into a casserole dish, add the sauce and cook for half an hour. Serve with rice. And naan bread.'

'Crumbs,' she said. 'You do a lot of cooking from scratch.'
'Yes, I do,' I said, getting out my little knitted purse that is just the right size to hold credit card, debit card and loyalty card.
'Oooh, ' said the vertically challenged little old lady who was in the queue behind me. 'Is that a hand-knitted purse?'
'Yes, it is,' I said.
'I love home-made things,' she sighed. 'You can't beat something that is home-made. What a sweet little home-made purse. Is it two ply?'

'I don't know, ' I said. 'I bought it in the Fair-Trade shop in town. It was home made by someone in Malaysia, if I remember rightly.'

'So you didn't knit it yourself then?' she said.
'No,' I said.

The cashier lady and the vertically challenged little old lady seemed disappointed by this revelation. In fact, they seemed positively crest-fallen.

'I do knit,' I said, hurriedly. I am thinking, why am I telling them that I knit??
'Oh good,' said the vertically challenged little old lady.

And with that, I smiled, made a comment about how lovely it was to see the sunshine todayand yes, the bunch of daffodils was a treat for me, and I beat a retreat to the car park.

Aaah. That was nice, I thought. Aren't people nice? What a nice little chit-chat.

My bonhommie lasted until leaving the car park when I was cut-up by a wazzock in a BMW.

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