Age and/or COVID?

Since COVID-19 became the uninvited guest in our world, Carol has been doing our shopping as necessary, while I have been keeping a very low public profile. The ramifications of that created this Post!

A small family store just outside of our general urban area had been highly recommended for their pies and pastries. Given that it would be around a 30 minute drive to get there, we decided to use the opportunity for all three of us to go and have an adventure.

As an aside, and because of our shopping arrangements, I have done very little regular buying of anything these past 6 months or so! On the isolated occasions when I have been at a checkout, there has been no money transacted (no touching of money) … but rather a simple “tap ‘n’ go with a credit card.

With the above information in mind …

We arrived at the store and, given that Ray can get extremely distraught and very vocal if Carol leaves us, it was decided that I would go in and buy some baked treats for us. It was a very small store, so I had quickly selected what I thought would be really nice and proceeded to a table that was obviously the checkout area.

A young man totalled up my purchases and gave me the credit card machine, which I intuitively tapped, but nothing happened. I then saw the little sign taped onto the machine … “No Tap ‘n’ Go.”

My reaction was confusion. I had been using tap ‘n’ go for the past 6 months or so now so how was I supposed to pay? The young man told me to insert my card. I must have given him a confused look (Where do I insert the card?) , because he pointed to the slot at the bottom of the machine. Ah yes of course! It was all coming back to me now.

So, having inserted the card, I waited. The young man was watching and leaned in towards me and said. “It needs your PIN number.” Of course! Now I am feeling a little self-conscious. How could I have forgotten that. As my finger hovered over the buttons, I thought “What is my PIN number?” I had a good idea what it might be, but rather than risk bringing the store to a standstill while I fumbled some options, and with the risk of my transaction being ultimately cancelled, I excused myself while I went outside to ask Carol! She knew it!

I returned to the store; carefully entered my PIN number, and watched in delight as the transaction was approved and the paper starting coming out of the machine.

“Would you like the receipt?” he asked

“Yes please” I replied (with a sigh of relief that it was all over now). I then turned towards the exit door, with my bag of baked treats in hand.

“Sir!” I heard from behind me. I stopped and turned. “Sir … you might want to remove your credit card from the machine!”