Letter to the nice man in Waterstones…

Dear Man in Waterstones

Before I get into the reason why I’m writing you this letter, I’d firstly like to thank you for taking the time to talk to me on Wednesday. I’m grateful that you felt able to approach me, despite the toddler snot on my cardigan and the recently discovered remnants of a Dairylea triangle on my jeans (which, for the record, I’ve now been wearing for 5 days straight).

Your advice was appreciated and I look forward to reading A Little Life (although to be honest at 720 pages, I think I’ve as much chance of finishing it as the Pontipines have of ever getting a decent storyline).

The thing is, Man in Waterstones, pleasant as you were, I didn’t go into your shop for a chat about my tastes in literature, or to hear your recommendations regarding the latest Man Booker nominees. Let me explain.

Three days per week I have a thirty minute lunch break, during which time I’m free to do exactly as I please – well, not exactly as I please, but if I’m not power shopping for rice crackers, belated birthday cards or Petits Filous, then that 30 minutes is mine, and mine alone.

Sometimes during that 30 minutes, I like to walk aimlessly around town, making the most of being able to overtake people on cobbled streets without worrying that my little girl is going to end up with the first ever case of pushchair whiplash.  Other times, I like to wander into your shop and browse the shelves and tables of books I’ll never have time to read, look at the quirky gifts I’ll forget to buy for people, and sometimes, quite frankly, I like to stare into space and enjoy the feeling of being alone with nothing pressing to do, just for that short while.

Occasionally (and only if I’ve had more than 6 hours sleep), I like to leaf through books and imagine that I’m the mysterious lady in the manor house with the exciting hidden past that everyone’s waiting to discover, and heck, I may even throw in an imagined dalliance with a troubled yet dashingly handsome man who may or may not (probably may) look a little bit like Ralph Fiennes in the English Patient. In that 30 minutes, it’s just me, and I can be anywhere. For just a few precious moments.

So you see Man in Waterstones, while I know you meant well, I was not in need of assistance, or in fact, of any form of human interaction whatsoever.  I appreciate that many people would welcome your advice and suggestions, but personally I’d be grateful if next time you look around your shop and see an overtired, food and snot splattered woman looking a little bit spaced out and a little bit unfocused, you resist the urge to help her figure out what she’s looking for. Chances are, in that 30 minutes of rare alone time, she’s managed to find it all by herself.

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0 thoughts on “Letter to the nice man in Waterstones…”

  1. Love this and i can so relate!! When you have so little time for yourself time itself is precious! Just popping into sainsburys by myself is like a break!! #momsterlink

  2. Lovely post and you are so right, sometimes to be alone is just right and well needed:)
    Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next Sunday.

  3. Ah yes, alone time is so fleeting during motherhood and it is a real bugger when it can’t be used the way we want to – to do with as we please. People not in the thick of the parenting jungle just can’t plain understand how important that alone time is!
    Tori @ The Mama Nurse

  4. Don’t you wish you could just wear a name tag that says hello…please don’t talk to me. I usually don’t have a problem with people trying to talk to me because I have been told I have resting bitch face lol. And I really try not to make eye contact with people except on the rare occasion that I am feeling friendly and they get eye contact and a smile even. I really am a nice person…really. Thanks for linking up with #momsterslink and I hope to see you again today!

    1. I feel torn because even though I love my alone time, I think it’s really nice when someone is friendly makes the effort to chat, so I wouldn’t want to discourage them. Maybe I need to work on avoiding eye contact! I’ll not manage to link up this weekend as I’m away for a few days, but will be back next week!

  5. I love to be alone. Don’t have too much of it at the moment with a lively 6 month old! xx
    Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next Sunday

  6. This is funny, I enjoyed it! Never make eye contact with anyone! I can understand, when you get so little time alone it’s nice to just be alone. And as a parent I find the opportunity to be alone only arises in random places. I’d like a bath alone once in a while, but if all that’s on offer is a trip to asda I’ll take it. And I’ll go to the self service checkout to avoid all interaction! #kcacols

  7. Oh God i know this feeling !! Over helpful people who just want to talk when you just want to walk.Im not back to work until next month but i normally get stopped just as my daughter falls a sleep in her pram by some ever so lovely person who tells me their life story. #brillblogposts

  8. Oh dear. That poor man probably thought he was doing such a great job too.
    My moments of peace used to be while my daughter had her violin lesson. It was worth paying for that 30 minutes I got to sit in the car and think my own thoughts.
    Great post. #brillblogposts

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