But when a sales assistant turns bad it’s a real shock to the system, like getting a kick in the nuts from the Dhali Lama or having a Jehovah’s Witness telling you to f**k off. It’s ain’t natural.
We experienced this on Friday at Vons when we stopped off to grab a few things. We collected what we needed and paid at the checkout then went to the cigarette counter to buy some smokes.
There was no-one serving so we stood drumming our fingers on the counter, grumbling in a typically understated British way until the girl from the dry-cleaning counter deigned to serve us.
But we weren’t allowed to pay for them there as we would at home and had to queue up at the checkout again. We complained under our breath, but obeyed like good little shoppers.
Having queued for five minutes or so with just our cigarettes, the woman behind the counter snatched it off us and barked, ‘Who the hell gave you these? We don’t sell these in cartons!’
We were so shocked that we were ready to walk away rather than cause a scene, but the woman grumpily passed the cigarettes over then scanner and clearly they did sell them in cartons because it went through without a problem.
She then asked for payment in a tone of voice that suggested that we were complete mugs for spending so much to indulge our bad habit.
To make matters worse, the woman was a manager and the encounter really upset Mrs P while I was too dumbfounded to react. As I said, you quickly take impeccable, polite service for granted.
So we won’t be going to Vons again, but it hasn’t put Mrs P off shopping. She and Marj went to Kohls yesterday and had a whale of a time buying clothes and shoes.
It’s coupon paradise here in Vegas and with the various discounts, money back coupons etc, they saved $30 more than they actually spent!