Mellors Reay’s Carol Reay is more than a natural born consumer.
She admits to being a shopaholic so in love with the shopping experience
that it takes something exceptional to gain her high street loyalty.
’Once, on a one-shop island holiday, I panicked as I didn’t like
anything in the one shop. By the third day, I’d started buying. I just
adjusted my needs to the available opportunity.
’So my chance to wax lyrical has to be about a shop - and I love
I always used to shop at the other place. The S word. Then I moved near
a Tesco. For weeks, I avoided it. I knew about Tesco from my childhood
and it wasn’t pleasant. Eventually, I found myself in its revolving
’Mountains of tomatoes - red, yellow, green, fat, blotchy, squidgy,
Loads of varieties. This screamed flair for food. They kept on
impressing me. Mushroom varieties, ads that didn’t talk down to me,
initiatives on healthy eating, jazzy bags of jam doughnuts.
’But, finally, it was the Blue Coats. I had read that Tesco had taken on
4000 unemployed folk, dressed them in blue waistcoats and set them loose
’On the Saturday, there was I, seven-months pregnant, toddler in
mid-tantrum, basket laden with tomatoes et al. Flustered. Up comes a
’Can I help at all?’ ’How?’ (me growling). ’Um, how about I stay with
you through the checkout and see you to your car?’ I fall into Blue
Coat’s arms. I rest my case.’