The Corner Shop – Being Local 3

The corner shops are a bit disappointing, as corner shops tend to be: porn, rotting veg, cheap DVDs and Mr Kipling cakes – how I miss the bachelor life. Maybe we just haven’t persisted with one yet – we are the centre of a triangle of them. One has a man stood near the counter who doesn’t seem to move, not even the point of his gaze. He’s been there every time and I’m intrigued. We think he may be the patriarch of the enterprise, literally keeping an eye on things, or a small section of them. I shall endeavour to see if it’s the high-value items he’s watching. He’s definitely an attraction, even though shop-wise it’s the least impressive and involves a bit of hill. And I must confess that by walking an extra 100 yards there is a Tesco Express with fruit and veg that isn’t withered. So at the moment it’s a choice between the staring motionless man shop when fruit isn’t needed or Tesco Express when it is. My son works for Tesco, so although I’m feeding The Man, I’m also feeding my own, and there’s fruit and veg that’s still edible by the time you get it home. What’s missing in all this is a cheery shopkeeper who’s knows my name and my regular purchasing requirements, essential ingredients in the being a local pie. So I go the city market for that: Mike and Deb’s and their son (name unknown) ‘Mediterranean’ fruit and veg stall, sardonic Gareth’s spice stall, the cheese woman (every man’s fantasy) Mr Pickering and his famous sausages and bacon. They all know who I am, have seen me in the local paper, have noticed me.

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