Have just found the following rant in my saved drafts. I have but a vague recollection of writing it on Saturday evening, having just returned from experiencing the delight that is Ballymena town centre one week before Christmas. In my defence, my annual migraine was in full swing, and I was exhausted…
Stupid town full of inconsiderate morons who stop for a yarn right in the middle of the street and don’t budge, so that the only way to make any progress whatsoever is to put your head down, square your shoulders and bore through.
Stupid shops playing stupid loud music and making it impossible to think straight over the already headache-inducing roar of stupid spoilt screaming brats throwing temper tantrums over selection boxes and stupid noisy toys.
Stupid one-way road layout in stupid town centre, with cars queued as far as the eye can see and stupid impatient eejits blaring their stupid horns as if it’s going to change the situation.
Stupid sodding PIPE BAND standing
playing wailing and screeching outside the Fairhill Centre in their stupid uniforms, and then parading through the mall when you’re trying to get into Starbucks in a last-ditch effort to regain some sanity.
Stupid queues tailing back throughout every single stupid shop, meaning you have to stand for half an hour every time you buy something, even if it is just a stupid, tiny keyring.
Happy Christmas? I quit.
By the time I eventually waded my way through the bagpipers to stand in the mile-long Starbucks queue, I was on the verge of tears. As I neared the counter, Kate appeared, weaving artfully through the crowds of shoppers and kilted ‘musicians’. “I think I’m going to cry,” I greeted her as she joined me. “Not-a-tall,” she replied briskly in her most no-nonsense voice, taking instant control of the situation and getting to grips with the ordering process. We fought our way to a table, bringing with us 2 gingerbread lattes, a muffin, and several chocolate-smothered pastry thingies. A brief silence ensued. The desire to cry did indeed fade. However, the headache remains even now – it is only just starting to fade, 3 days later.
Ballymena + Christmas: not for the faint-hearted (or the prone to migraines).