I enjoy shopping. I enjoy the process of going and looking at nice things and coming home with more nice things than I had before I left the house. I guess I'm a bit of a magpie. Although not everything I buy is shiny.
Many things are shiny though.
Today I went over to Canary Wharf. I remember years ago when nobody was there at weekends and there was a Tesco Metro and a few sad-looking shoe shops. But these days it's a proper shopping centre.
I thought I may look for some new shirts. I don't actually need any - in the traditional sense of the word - but it's always nice to add a little more variety into the wardrobe.
But shirt shops are so intimidating. Why do they need quite so many staff? Why do the staff always follow you around silently, hovering just out of sight waiting to pounce if you should show any interest in a shirt. I don't tend to buy "plain" shirts, and so it often takes me a while in shops to find the small section where they put the shirts with patterns. I'm not really interested in owning a wardrobe full of identical "slightly blue" or "slightly pink" shirts.
So wandering around shirt shops in a area which sells mostly to people who work in the financial sector can mean quite a search to find a shirt which isn't plain, or has more pattern than just a subtle stripe running through it.
Twice today I left shirt shops because of an assistant following me around silently like a creepy stalker. I ended up in Waitrose - at least the staff there don't follow you around the place.
After successfully getting a shirt with enough pattern to keep me interested, I popped in JD Sports to pick up some new tops for the gym. I find with gym tops that I get through them pretty quickly. They get worn and through the wash so often that they don't tend to last all that long, so I like to get new ones from time to time. Anyway, I was paying, and a guy came in having called in advance to reserve a pair of trainers. Is that something people do? I don't really get the "designer trainer" thing, but it surprises me that someone would call ahead and ask for a particular pair of trainers. Maybe I'm just too old to understand.
Despite the intimidation, I can never get as excited by shopping online as by actually going into a shop and looking at things. I think I enjoy spontaneous shopping more than researched shopping. Of course, if you're buying something expensive then research is good. But if you're buying a shirt, or a suit, then I find that spontaneous shopping with a limited budget is actually more fun. It's more fun to say "I'm going to go out and spend up to X on a shirt today". Much more fun than trawling the internet to save yourself every last 50p...
Talking of which, it's Eurovision in the not-too-distant future - I must start buying stuff...