Last week I was at the shopping centre (nothing unusual there), going up and down the aisles of the supermarket grabbing everything I knew we needed, (still nothing newsworthy). My last stop before heading for home was the greengrocers but once trapped in there, (it’s one way in and one way out), I realised that back at the supermarket I’d forgotten to buy the plain, Greek-style, sugar-free, organic, completely natural yoghurt Miss Arabella puts on my list.
Of course I groaned because I did not want to detour back into those over-crowded aisles. But, there is a yoghurt section at the greengrocers so I headed over there and stood, staring at the selection not seeing Arabella’s preferred brand. Then I noticed a woman who was about my age doing the exact same thing.
I picked up a kilo of plain organic yoghurt that Arabella would just have to be happy with then the woman said, ‘Excuse me, is that yoghurt low in sugar?’
I said, ‘It’s plain so yeah, there’s no sugar’.
‘Is it regular or low fat?’
‘It’s the regular. My teenager has something against low-fat varieties’.
And she smiled sympathetically and said, ‘Mine too. Mine are on strange diets’.
‘So are mine.’
‘They won’t eat carbs’, she said, ‘And sugar’s the new enemy and I’m supposed to give them protein and they give me long lists of things they want me to buy like chia seeds and unsweetened muesli and non-homogenised milk.’ I’d just met my soul sister.
‘That’s exactly how it is at our house. It’s something that’s come over them since they started at uni and it’s turned them completely mad. Are yours shaking up powders and leaving a mess all over the kitchen bench?’
‘Yes’, she said like finally someone understood her world of pain. ‘They buy these great big tubs…’
‘Yes, they’re blue…’
‘And they leave them on the bench taking up all the space and they have these shaker bottles with a metal springy thing to blend all the powder…’
‘And do they leave those containers all over the bench?’
‘Every time. Never put anything away. And there’s all this stuff they’re mixing up and saying this is what you need to do if you want to get in shape and lose weight. Well look at me. I haven’t had a fat day in my life and I never carried on with all this nonsense’.
‘Exactly. And the diets are so strict they can’t stick to them and so then they go off on a binge’.
‘I was in my son’s bedroom and I found empty packets of Kettle chips, sour cream dips, chocolate wrappers and all the things that turn him hysterical if I dare to walk through the door with them’.
‘I was in my Archie’s bedroom and found three empty red wine bottles’. And then the phone rang and it was Arabella and she was thrilled to hear I was at the shops because she wanted me to buy tamari almonds and spinach leaves and more organic eggs.
‘It doesn’t stop, does it’, said the woman full of sympathy. ‘I keep hoping it’s just a passing phase. Good luck to you’. And she picked up the same yoghurt I was getting for Arabella and off she went.
There’s others out there – just like Archie and Arabella!
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