Sunday 27 December 2009

Things not to do at Christmas...

There are things that you just don't do at Christmas... well, at least, you shouldn't.
  1. Travel anywhere by car on Christmas Eve
  2. Go out for 'one quick drink' on Christmas Eve and wake up with a hangover
  3. Go shopping for just about anything more than a pint of milk any time after the 23rd December
  4. Go shopping practically any time between Boxing Day and New Year's Day.
I managed to avoid all of these Christmas traumas except the last. My nearly-mother-in-law and I decided (goodness knows why) that it was a good idea to go to Bluewater today. For those who don't live in the South East corner of England, Bluewater is a massive shopping mall - one of the biggest in Europe. It is laid out over two levels in a triangle (I always wonder how the shops in the centre of the triangle are serviced?). One of the nicest things, compared to the very limited number of malls I have visited, is the architecture. Each mall has a 'theme' the most striking being the one with a representation of the Thames laid in the floor with villages marked out along it.

Today was not a good day to shop. We arrived, I thought, quite early just around quarter to eleven. We parked the car (eventually) and made our way into the Mall via Marks and Spencer's. This isn't just a queue... this is an M&S queue (to paraphrase their adverts)... good grief the queues for the tills were HUGE. That set the tone for the day really. The malls were packed and so were most of the stores. We didn't really buy much - and probably our favourite part was sitting down for a cup of coffee!