By KATE HUNTER.
When it comes to shopping, I’m a gatherer.
I’ll go to a particular butcher for meat (but another for chicken), a fruit and veg shop for, yes, fruit and veg. I like to get bread from the bakery up the road. I’m not sure if it’s better quality than bread from the supermarket, but the lady behind the counter is friendly and always gives us extra rolls if we rock up close to closing time.
My husband is a hunter by nature as well as name, and thinks I’m nuts.
If he goes shopping with a list he’ll return with every item on the list, in half the time I’d have taken – because he goes to one of the two big supermarkets down the road and did the lot right there.
He’s not bothered the bagged carrots he bought are a bit floppy (of course they are after travelling to Brisbane from Western Australia). He’s not concerned that the apples have been refrigerated for six months; or that he was obliged to buy two 500g packs of mince when he only needed 750g for the spag bol.
He likes it if the checkout person is friendly, but he doesn’t expect it. As long as he can get the shopping done with minimal stops and transactions, he’s cool.
I could do without going from one shop to another too, but that’s what I’m prepared to do to get the stuff I want. And I’m happy to pay a bit more for a butcher to cut the steak thickly and chuck in a few bones for the dog.
I used to think it was a girl/guy thing – this hunter v gatherer instinct, but I started looking and asking around, and clearly it’s not.
My dad will drive across town to buy particularly stinky Polish sausages and to enjoy a bit of banter with the guy who makes them. My parents in law will shop at a smaller, less conveniently located supermarket because the manager is happy to stock the kind of crackers they like. The manager of the bigger supermarket nearer their home said it wasn’t worth their while stocking that brand.