Thursday, May 2, 2019

Shopping List

As I dropped my passenger at the door of the hospital early this morning for his scheduled ultrasound scan I was reminded of the unparalleled privileges of country living. We were all of five minutes from our residence.  Parking was no issue. I had time to return home or go for a coffee before returning to collect the patient. The level of anxiety was zero.  Only days ago I had attended upon an audiologist with equal facility.  And before that it had been a lab for routine blood tests. All literally within walking distance; and managed by people whom one frequently knows. The same can be said of one's family physician, dentist and the optometrist. Not to mention the baker and the grocer. The only exception is a car dealership.  For that I had to go to the City.

There was a time when we had an excellent General Motors dealership here - Burn's Pontiac Buick. When I came here in 1976 I made a point of buying cars from them. For reasons I won't speculate there is no longer a dealership of any description locally. Lately I have dealt with a Ford dealership in the west end of Ottawa.  Late last night around 11:00 pm I received an email from the salesman there advising me my new vehicle had arrived.  We arranged to see it at noon today before it was "unwrapped".

After the hospital conclave - and before heading to the car dealership - we stopped at Mamma's Place for our standard plate of protein. It was a venture that pleased me exceedingly.  Lately I have been confined to eating mainly mushy food to accommodate a recent tooth extraction.  Though I haven't healed completely I was able to endure the inconvenience of chewing bacon and sausage on the right side of my mouth - the Sacrament of Heaven!  Nothing satisfies me as unreservedly as a traditional breakfast!

The salesman at the dealership was as usual prompt and attentive.  Given that the ceremony was one which I have repeated often it transpired without delay.  I'll pick up the new car and pay for it in several days following its PDI (pre-delivery inspection), licensing and wash. It intrigued me to be told by a young salesman that customarily the resale value of vehicles drops after 50,000 kms.  Considering we clock about 35,000 kms annually I derive some satisfaction knowing I routinely trade at the low end. I nonetheless experience a degree of sentimentality upon abandoning the current model because it is then just warming to its mechanical sprightliness. This particular model hasn't changed noticeably in the three years since its first production. I am however already beginning to expect that an electric engine (or motor or device -  or whatever is the correct terminology) is the next generation.

One can't avoid the emerging reluctance about the visceral decline of the automobile.  There is something unappetizing about a purely electric manifestation.  Maybe I am being silly but my recollection is that the "feel" and "sound" of an engine is part of the drama. In any event my personal legitimacy for a love affair with the automobile is waning by virtue of my advancing age.  Even under the best of circumstances old fogeys driving Cadillacs are considered a driving hazard; and having an 8-cylinder engine (were it indeed possible) is a wasted additive.  The dénouement is both inevitable and inescapable - which at least has the advantage of encouraging the maintenance of a jalopy. It makes the disturbing reality and diminishing excitement of newness oddly more digestible.

For the time being those philosophic redirections will remain as conjecture only.  I shall persist in my characterization of youthfulness and vigour by submitting to what little strength remains in my edacity for pleasure.

Just when I felt the delight of tangible reality was vanishing we stumbled upon a peculiar find at a sports store (Trail Head).  Our shopping list had included a new pair of socks, the Wigwam brand made of Merino wool and silk.  We found one acceptable pair (and have ordered others in white).  When paying for our purchase we noticed a display of tiny wallets.  I bought one, their Secrid "Slim Wallet", which very conveniently holds five cards, driver's licence, health card and some bills.

Secrid Slim Wallet

It is a tiny wallet and holds precisely what I regularly use and no more. It is "the gift for the man who has everything". And it belongs to the category, "Just when you thought you had seen it all!"

The one bit of business which we had actually figured upon doing today was some grocery shopping. This we accomplished with equal gusto and gratification at Farm Boy where I reignited my regular diet of fresh salmon and raw veggies.

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