last updated June 24, 2012

Dressing up

I hadn't realised that people get dressed up to go to the supermarket.

My flirt with mainstream society happens usually late on a weekday evening, every couple of weeks. I rent a car and go to a supermarket and minimise exposure to public by choosing the time of day least busy. The rest of my existence is biking to work and picking up small food stuffs and my Cycling Weekly magazine from Raj's place down the road. Occasionally, and somewhat reluctantly, I mix with strangers when I take the train to Edinburgh (the reason for travelling through is worth it though).

I went to Silverburn shopping centre in the slight haze of my come down from a hard week and lie-in. I hadn't really considered the time and day as it has been so long since I made the mistake. It was busy. Just as I skirt main streets and opt for back lanes, I made my way for the top of the multi storey car park where there were just a couple of cars and more peace. I took some deep breaths as down below drivers jostled for the disabled or parent and kid parking so as to minimise exercise.

From the other side of the building you look down on a housing estate. The buildings roof is an industrial escape from the over-designed coloured metallic facades. I head for the stairs and make my way down - suddenly becoming overtaken by colours, sounds and brands in an overwhelming sensory rush. It all tires me. I also immediately feel disconnected and slightly ill. I feel people looking at me. Many wear short shirts and shorts despite the chill in the air outside - if you had woken up here, with loss of hearing, you might think it was Houston, Texas. You soon realise it is very certainly Pollok, Glasgow.

I realise I am very judgmental about people. I head to Marks and Spencers food hall and find a lot of Women dressed up with large pieces of gold jewellery and lots of make up and find this quite odd. I am annoyed that I need a pound coin to get a trolley but a friendly young staff member helps me out. I trawl through the aisles and bag a few bargains - there isn't any gluten free bakery products left so I console myself with a bottle of Rum. I speak to a few employees and shoppers who appear as bamboozled by the busy surroundings as I am which helps me keep going. I let an old woman go in front and we have a chat - the middle aged woman behind me is also chatty and we discuss anthropology in a kind of tabloid sort of way. I enjoy the slow pace of my short conversations and the brief camaraderie that is built up. I think I'll enjoy being old.

Posted by stupot at June 24, 2012 09:54 PM