I am off to town today – and not with any great enthusiasm. I am only going because there is a bit of a window in the weather and (mainly) because I have 4 tickets left that run out on Tuesday. Being a Yorkshire lass I have need of value for money and wish to maximise my ticket use. (Of course, being that same Yorkshire lass I now find myself in a quandary over a replacement book of tickets, as I shall be receiving my free ones in May, when I become Officially Ancient.)

It is a chance to buy some fresh food and a little more variety than can be had here on the island. I have no great plans for baking goods especially, though I may buy some Rye flour. Mainly my trolley will be filled with avocados and lemons and large boxes of mushrooms and vine tomatoes and fresh herbs and all that kind of gubbins. Oh. Must make mental note to ensure that I get Thyme… my head is still working on a Feta loaf proposal.

Speaking of Thyme, I must get myself a new watch whilst I am out.

Another thing that I must do is to make a detour to the garden centre as I am still in want of a simple trigger spray bottle for crusting my bread. This is no hardship as the garden centre makes the best coffee in town. The only decent coffee in fact – and today I have time for that.

I shall also be buying cheese. A nice Brie with any luck, unpasteurised and ready to eat. I have plans to make the Hazel Maizel bread from the River Cottage Handbook 3 this weekend. They should combine well. Or maybe a good goat’s cheese? Perhaps both! I can’t wait to see what’s in, it is always an adventure.

A trip to the butcher will also be in order, for their excellent sausages and dry cured bacon.

It is a long day – the local collection service will scoop me up from the end of the drive at 8:25 and Kelly will take us to Loth, where we will catch the ferry. Both trips are via our neighbouring island of Eday today, so we take almost two hours each way.  We arrive in Kirkwall at 09:50 and the boat departs this afternoon at 16:00. I should be home soon after 6pm, depending on the route that Kelly has to make for efficiency.

Tesco takes about an hour. (It is a very small Tesco, with minimal choice.)

It is a large investment of my time, for very little reward, so you can see why I go shopping only under duress.

I have my knitting and I have my Kindle. I shall pass my time on the boat profitably. All the same, I would rather be at home. That said, there is the prospect of fish and chips for lunch. Something to look forward to, at least. It’s not an extravagance. There is a trick to these trips to town – make time for proper food instead of picking and snacking and they are far less exhausting and less apt to wipe me out the following day.

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