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Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Swimming, Shopping and Eating

I haven't posted anything for the past few days, as you will have noticed if you are a regular reader of my blog. Well, there isn't a great deal for me to write about. I know I can write about the most trivial of things, which actually makes a blog interesting, because life is made up of the most mundane of things. It's not actually the big things that are so interesting, it's the minor incidents, those things that we all recognise, that makes a blog interesting. It's what they say about drama, 'life with the boring bits taken out.' Unlike a soap opera on television, 'life with the boring bits put back.' In the future people will be looking at such things as blogs, diary entries, journals and so on, when they are researching material to attempt to understand how we lived in the early 21st Century. Attempting to understand why we spend so much of our time looking at social media, texting endlessly on mobile devices, working out how we managed our lives, so a blog like this is likely to be used in that research. One wonders how it will be preserved, how will digital material, most of it archived on computers, hard drives and serves. Will it actually survive? Unlike all those documents which were written on such material as vellum, parchment and paper, stored in the archives of countries, great estates etc etc. which have survived for hundreds of years.

Well, we are continuing to go swimming at Nuffield at Kent's Hill. It's a nice place as there's little noise, no loud music and no noisy children (no under 16's allowed.) Also, there is a sauna, spa (Jacuzzi) and steam room as well as a far deeper swimming pool which is better for me to swim in. You get a towel when you arrive, which means you always get one which is dry, although we take our own towels. We have also now bought our own pad locks, which have combination locks, so no having to have a key on a wristband, you just have to remember the combination lock, and, because mine is red it's far easier to find when you return to the changing room as you can see it clearly. I had to remember the number of my locker when I swam at the other gym, D.W. which could be a problem as you couldn't get your clothes out if you couldn't open your locker.

We went shopping at Morrison's on Saturday morning. We like to chop and change where we shop for our groceries. Usually we go to Sainsbury's in Witan Gate in Milton Keynes. It's not too big as supermarkets go. If you compare it to Asda near the stadium, it's about the right size, or there again the big Tesco at Kingston. Those two supermarkets sell a wide range of non-food items, which include clothing, which takes up a fair amount of space at Asda and Tesco, as well as stationary, newspapers and magazines, homewares, besides the general groceries that you'd expect to find in a supermarket. It means when they are so big, that you can spend forever walking up and down the aisles. You can become totally distracted by all the non-food items. When we go to Sainsbury's we do tend to spend a lot of time browsing, particularly the clothing. Also, we have our repeat prescriptions made up in the pharmacy in Sainsbury's. The staff in there know us well. You just have to ring up and they take the repeat prescription order which is sent through to the doctor's surgery at Ashfield Medical Centre and the doctor signs the prescription (which is electronic, which saves on paperwork) and they send it back to the pharmacy and they make up the prescription. This takes around a week and we just have to go into Sainsbury's to pick up the medication. The pharmacy in Sainsbury's was recently taken over by Lloyd's. I'm not sure why, because it was always, up until then, a Sainsbury's pharmacy. Something to do with being taken over as part of being a monopoly or something, and giving it to Lloyd's makes it less of a monopoly of ownership or something. No, it doesn't make sense to me either, as there are a few other Lloyd's chemists around Milton Keynes already.

As I have mentioned already, we decided to go to Morrison's to do our weekly shop last Saturday. We like their meat and cheese, infact, most of their range of such things as meat, cheese, pies and particularly fruit and veg. In Milton Keynes we're spoilt for choice when it comes to grocery shopping. There's not only Morrison's and Sainsbury's, who both have two supermarkets in the Milton Keynes area, but Tesco at Kingston (as well as at Bletchley and Wolverton, as well as the smaller convenience stores dotted around the city at such places as Oldbrook. Then we have Waitrose at Oakgrove, as well as the cheaper end of the market with Lidl (having a store near Tesco in Oldbrook, as well as Aldi, with stores at Bradwell Common and a newer store at Westcroft, we we occasionally use.

When we arrived at Morrison's Carol suggested we go into the café and have something to eat. As she's diabetic, sometimes she needs to eat something to prevent her blood sugar level dropping too far.  Having got a trolley for our shopping, we needed to put it in one of the lockable cupboards they have so that nobody can run off with your shopping without paying. It took some while to work out how the locks worked on the doors. It needs a £1 coin in the slot inside which releases the key which you then use to lock the door with the trolley inside. On arriving at the café we then found that there was a long queue at the counter. It wasn't moving, or if it was, it was incredibly slow. I suggested we just wait a while as it would soon move. It didn't, after five minutes. The staff in the café were either incredibly  disorganised or the café was understaffed. As it was a Saturday, would you not think the management of the café would have put on more staff to deal with the amount of customers? Or else the girl on the till had no idea how to cope with the pressure of numbers. Or something else. Whatever it was, we didn't find out, as we left to get on with our shopping. At that rate Morrison's will have lost a great deal of custom.

On Sunday morning we went to Nuffield at Kent's Hill. It was reasonably empty, but there's always someone or other who insists on hogging most of the pool for themselves, forgetting that they take up some much of the space as they swim up and down. The last time we went the steam room wasn't working properly. For some reason it wasn't making a great deal of steam which meant it wasn't as efficient as it might have been. But on Sunday it was back up to temperature. Certainly good for my back and shoulder injury. Still manage to swim around 15-20 lengths of the pool. But I must remember to take and use my G.T.N. spray before I get in the pool to prevent having an angina attack.

From Nuffield, we decided we needed something to eat, so we went to Frost's Garden Centre at Woburn Sands. We haven't been for a while, and were struck by the improvements that have been going on there. The restaurant has had a complete revamp. They've always had a good restaurant with a great selection of food, not just snacks, but the lunch menu looked good. I had a toasted sandwich with bacon and cheese and Carol had a baked potato and tuna and we both had lattes. Good and hot and a treat after our time at Nuffield.
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