A young woman in a fetching M&S uniform asks “cash or card?” Some of the tills were card-only and others were cash-only.
“Both, please,” I replied.
I could see the word eh? forming in her mind from the way her forehead took on the texture of corrugated cardboard.
Generously, I saved her the time it would have taken to vocalise her question: “I’ve just been to Butllins, you see.”
Her corrugated forehead deepened in complexity. “Wha?”
“They have an arcade there, you see,” I explained.
“Not with you,” she countered.
“Not important,” I counter-countered kindly.
She looked worriedly behind me at the queue that must have been lengthening and so I said “Allow me to get to the point.” I paused, waiting for her expression of relief to form. Strangely, it didn’t.
“Well, go on then!” Her voice had raised more than half an octave over the duration of the pause moving it from a rather fetching alto to a distinctly tremulous soprano.
“I’d like to pay for this loaf of bread …” I waved it before her for clarification. “… with thirty-six pence in two pence coins and (quick maths) one pound sixty-three pence in, erm, that is to say: on my card.”
“Ah, okay,” she said brightly, ” you can do that at the service desk.” She smiled and looked behind me at, one would presume, the next customer.
I headed for the service desk as “cash or card?” rang out behind me. I knew exactly where that desk was because I’d visited there before. Do remind me to tell you about those times.