Enter Engen Quick-Shop. Hate this. Worst thing in the whole world next to amoebic dysentry. Grab a basket.
Hurl in a bottle of antifreeze, a Heat magazine, two TV dinners, cupcakes, spare sparkplugs and a two litre juice. Scan the shop. Still too busy.
Throw in a bottle of Fissan's nappy rash cream, a bag of cotton swabs, something called 'gripe water.'
Shop now quasi-empty except for one lady – 30ish – at counter. Fuck. Maybe by the time I ask she'll be gone. (She's not, evidentally.)
Quickly scan the condom rack – don't want to fucking stare at it – Christ – and make note to ask for first brand I see in 0.2 seconds of condom scanage.
Be cool. Be cool. Oh God, pretend you're normal.
Enter first Condom Buying obstacle.
Lady, ironically named Inconspicuous, behind counter: Will that be all? [scans everything]
Peas: Erm no. Don't giggle, ferfucksakes, hold it together. Hold. It. Together.
A box of Marlboro Lights and... [lowers voice] Stop blushing, fuck can I ignite myself on fire, and erm..some of those, you know, Fetherlites. [The last word is a whisper, because everyone can hear me.]
Lady: Some what?
Peas: [gnashing teeth] Feather. Lites.
Lady: A lighter?
Peas: Sure, why not.
Lady tallies it up. What a fuck up. I can't opt out now. Like always, I start giggling hysterically, blushing and pretend to play with my cellphone. Push buttons furiously.
OK. Breathe. Ask again.
Peas: Oh...and also a box of FetherLites.
Lady: Oh FETHERLITE CONDOMS?
Lady: THESE? [Points. Might as well have a strobe light over my head right now.]
Peas: [Jesus Christ, fuck.] Yes. Now that EVERYONE IN THIS SHOP KNOWS WHAT I'M DOING TONIGHT, why not announce it over the loudspeaker?
Fuck, too late...
Lady: CONSTANCE! Constance! uFetherLites.
Constance: Eish wena. What?
Peas: You know what, let's just forget the whole thing.
Lady: You want the FetherLites or not?
Lady: uFetherLites, over there! One amaFETHERLITES, DUREX, uFETHERLITES, WENA! Yabonga!
Peas: [under breath] I'm going to kill myself.
Tumbled outside, red, giggling and not coping and trip over a brick.
The brick knocked some sense into me: it's time to look for alternative contraception (one without hormones.) I can't handle this. And why, oh God WHY don't they stock condoms in the aisle like other fucking merchandise? So I can pick and choose by myself?
For fuck sakes, the pads and tampons are in the aisle, why can't the condoms be too? I would probably blush asking for “Kotex Maxi Pads” or “Heavy Flow Lillets,” hell. They just do this too purposefully embarrass people like me.
Mental note: Always buy the 50-dome Valu-Pack at Clicks. These stand the test of time.