Westmeat is one of my favourite shops in Blenheim, which might surprise those of you who know I’m vegetarian.
But, you know, I’m not that interested in clothes, and grocery shopping gives me hives, and I don’t participate in any sport that requires more specialized equipment than goggles, and Husband has effectively ensured I will never voluntarily enter an electronics shop ever again ever. I suppose if the post office had soft furnishings and offered a more imaginative array of services, that might be my favourite shop, but it doesn’t and therefore it isn’t.
All I actually buy in Westmeat is food for Jed the Dog. I order chicken necks and chunks of lamb in multiples of 10kg, and it comes in boxes with my name written on it which makes me feel special. So that’s nice. Also, the shop also has minced chicken – in MINIATURE CUBES.
I like cubes.
We can only afford the dogfood, but Andrew sometimes accompanies me into the shop to stare wistfully at schnitzel. However on this particular occasion, he stayed outside in the carpark because he wanted to interrogate a suspected oil leak beneath the car.
When I went to check out my basket of carcass in the shop, I asked the assistant whether Westmeat opens on Sundays.
She said, “Unfortunately, no, because most of us have lives . . . except for you.”
There was no malice behind the comment; in fact, it’s entirely the sort of thing I would say while regretting the words even as they plopped out my mouth. I could actually HEAR her thought process go something like, ‘Hey! I’ve got a joke- yay me!- there’s the punchline- no wait! THERE’S ANOTHER! I’m ON FIRE!- hmm not sure about this but I’m committed now- oops. That didn’t sound as good out loud as it did in my head. In fact it might have been kinda insulting to the wrong person . . . like OH GOD IT’S A CUSTOMER.’
I regretted not doing more than smiling and looking vaguely perplexed, because I found it increasingly hilarious the more I thought about it – while in the meantime her supervisor stared appalled and the poor girl, at this stage bright red, went into blather overdrive.
I’m sorry to say I stored up the mirth until I related the incident to Andrew.
“Well,” said Andrew, “while you were inside, I was under the car checking the leak and a car pulled up and Jed must have been sitting at the window, because I heard a woman say, ‘Oh, isn’t he a gorgeous fellow?’ and then I popped up just as her husband looked across, and he said, ‘Well, I suppose he’s all right’, and she’s going, ‘Oh, no NO, I meant the dog. Not er, you. Although you’re nice too’.”
Right there: THAT’S why Westmeat is my favourite shop in Blenheim.