I dislike going shopping with my dear other half for many reasons but the main reason the whole affair fills me with such dread is because of food courts.
When you undertake a day of shopping with my husband it is never a brief duck in and out get what you need kind of thing.
Inevitably we must go here there and everywhere, to China and back, nip into Uzbekistan before the day is done.
Prices must be compared, certain things MUST be purchased from at least seven different supermarkets.
It’s just how it is with him and I have resigned myself to the fact that shopping “quickly” just isn’t within my hubbies mental capabilities.
The result of these drawn out all day affairs means that at some point we will need to eat something.
This means we have to enter into the dreaded kingdom of “food courts”.
Let’s face it, food court food is pretty awful and the choices are limited.
There’s always either the predictable artery clogging MacDonald’s or KFC, shriveled luke warm pretending to be Chinese cuisine, a kebab place, greasy fish and chips, a “healthy” sandwich place that costs an arm and a leg but usually tastes like cardboard, Subway (the mere smell of which makes me gag) and very occasionally an Indian takeaway fast food place.
To me eating is simple. You are hungry, you buy something and you eat it and viola – you are not hungry anymore.
This is not the case with my husband.
In fact even before we enter the dreaded kingdom I can sense a shift in my husband’s mood. You can visably see his shoulders tense, his mouth begins to scowl in disgust, his eyes harden and oh boy…here we go AGAIN.
So, we go into the food court and I need to eat something because if I don’t I will simply faint. That’s just how I am. Hypoglycemia – something my husband doesn’t believe I have but it’s the truth.
So I see food…I go and select something, sit down and eat it.
While I sit there and eat it I observe my husband transform into something akin to a food court werewolf.
He literally sheds his usual easy going persona and becomes….something else. Something quite horrible and rather embarrassing.
It’s quite a thing to behold, this shift, that goes from sneers of disgust, growls of contempt, spits of grumbled verbal abuse, aggressive gesticulations as he paces from counter to counter peering at the dishes wrinkling his nose and baring his teeth at the poor innocent employees who don’t quite know what to make of his mumbled tirade, which consist of “This is shit….it’s all shit….Nothing but shit food….”
He does this for at least twenty minutes and then he comes back and sits down (I’m a slow eater) and the next transformation takes place when I say.
“Didn’t you find something?”
“I’m not eating, it’s all shit…I hate this place!” he says.
And then he sulks.
Nose in the air like “I’m too good for food courts and I can survive on air alone.”
This used to make me feel guilty. I don’t know why?
I would kindly make suggestions “Why don’t you try this…or that….Go look at the……”
But he would just settle deeper and deeper into the sulk position and eventually refuse to even speak.
The whole day is ruined by the time we get to the silent sulking hulk stage because it means it’s time to go home just so the poor starving man won’t wither away.
The ONLY thing that even comes close to being acceptable for my husband’s finicky tastes (and really it is amazing because when I first met him his diet consisted entirely of takeaway food with Macdonald’s being a huge part of his diet.) is the Indian takeaway food.
That he WILL eat, onion bhaji after onion bhaji, but not many food courts have one.
In fact the presence of one of these Indian takeaway places largely determines, in my husband’s eyes whether or not the whole shopping centre in it’s entirety is “shit” or not.
I am writing this because tomorrow we have to go food shopping.
We have nothing. I was forced to make cauliflower soup last night for dinner as there was nothing else in the fridge. All the cupboards are bare. Not even a humble spud in sight.
I did think to myself that maybe next time we go on one of these tiresome day long, sometimes all weekend long shopping sprees, that perhaps I should pack a picnic lunch? That would solve the problem wouldn’t it? No more embarrassing werewolf morphing episodes ?
But it’s a catch 22.
We’d have to go shopping for food FIRST.
“Cauliflower sandwich dear?”