Speak up and change our world

by Penny M

It was one fine day in the supermarket.

I took great care to choose peaches that did not look bruised. I considered the fact that they had travelled from farm to packing depot to store. I contemplated the care that had been expended to keep them bruise-less. It was well worth the price.

I was happy with my selection. I placed them in my basket with respect. I trawled the store for the rest of my listed requirements. Each additional item was placed strategically around my pieces of fruit to avoid the slightest detriment to their health.

Upon arrival at the checkout, I held my trophies aloft with my most winning smile.

Peaches“Please be gentle with these.”

The till operator rewarded me with a cheerful glance, rang the price up, and placed my purchase on the counter with the same care as she did the eggs.

The packer had missed our exchange. She packed the first packet with goodies whilst I paid. Then, before I had a chance to stop her, (you guessed it) she dumped her fruity victims into the bottom of the second bag. Shock waves ricocheted through my psyche. I gulped air to calm myself before sputtering out my complaint. To ignore such blatant abuse would be an injustice.

I spoke up.

“Do you realise that I spent time to find peaches without bruises? And you have just dumped them in the bag without care. You have probably bruised them.”

The recipient of my complaint had the grace to apologise as did the checkout lady who realised that her colleague had not paid attention.

Perhaps these two Customer Servants will remember their lesson and honour the pickers, packers, merchandisers and consumers with every piece of fruit that crosses their counter. I might acquire a reputation for being a ‘grumpy old bag’, but I intend to speak up on every such occasion. Imagine what it could do for our economy, stress levels, facial features and hair colour if each one of us contributed to the education and training of every checkout operator and packer in the country.

The challenge is on. You too can change our world…


4 thoughts on “Speak up and change our world

  1. jac dowling says:

    When I spoke up some years ago Penny , I tipped the contents of the shopping basket all over the checkout and told the untrained and rude staff to sort themselves out or find another job! didn’t wait for a response, but there was rather a lot of clearing up to do in my wake.

  2. Susan says:

    Penny, maybe this is the chance to add yet another string to your already busy bow. You could venture into staff training!

  3. Hazel Bond says:

    What I can’t stand about the packers is that they always put all the heavy things in one bag and leave the others light as feathers. This is okay when the car guards help, but once I get home it is difficult to get from car to house, unless I have re-packed, which I usually do in the shop. I have even written to Pick ‘n Pay about it, but absolutely no notice was taken. I and all my friends are in our eighties and don’t have the strength we used to have. We all complain of this lop-sided packing.

    • Susan says:

      Hazel, I have the same problem. Every time I shop I have to tell the packer that I don’t want all the heavy things in one bag because I can’t lift it out of the car when I get home. I take pains to explain that this is the reason why I have provided three bags to put twelve or fifteen things in. When I show them my bony fingers and skinny arms, they understand, but I still have to do it every time. I am hoping that eventually I will have explained it to every single packer, but it could just end up being my life’s work…

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