Sobey’s is my neighbourhood supermarket.

Sobey’s is my neighbourhood supermarket.

1. I head to the dairy section to pick up a litre of milk. A little old woman with a red scarf around her head is peering through the refrigerator door.

Two percent, one percent, skim. I stand behind her and wait. Two percent, one percent… skim…

“Decisions, decisions,” I say.

She jumps about a foot in the air. We both start laughing.

2. I go to turn up the cat food aisle, and a little old woman with big thick glasses on has her cart sideways across the aisle. I back up my cart a little bit and she turns her cart away from me. I start to go up the aisle, but then she starts to back up. So I pull back a little bit. She turns her cart around and points it towards me. Her cart contains six boxes of kleenex and ten or twelve packages of cookies. I back up and pull off to the side so she can drive past. She stops to fiddle with her purse. We are basically back how we started. Then she straightens up and steers her cart past me.

“Thank you,” she says.

3. I’m picking up some toilet paper. A woman in pink pants with salt-and-pepper hair appears at the end of the aisle.

“They put some of them in packages of eight, and some of them in packages of thirty-two,” she says. “Now how are you supposed to carry them home? They have these packages of eight, but these ones here are twenty-four, or something like that, now why do they do that?”

“It’s crazy,” I say.

She’s already past me and halfway down the aisle. “We don’t use that word,” she says.