My cow cowl, garden centre visits, unhelpful sales people and local parkruns

The timeline for my blog is all over the place at the moment so I shall just get it all out in one go. First up, in Edinburgh we had a bit of time for a mooch around the shops. Lululemon and Sweaty Betty are close to each other, and I wanted to have a look for a summer yoga top. I have a winter one which I got from SB- it has a band around the waist so when you are doing inversions it doesn’t ride up- I do not want to flash my stomach to everyone in the class. Anyway, it has elbow-length sleeves so it is too warm for now. I have tried a few vests and t-shirts- trying to tuck them in bit they always some un-tucked and I leaves me feeling uncomfortable and not focused on the pose as much.

I had looked online and seen a few in SB but I also wanted to look in Lululemon because I just love their clothes. With help from the salesperson I found a vest and a hoodie but remembered I had a voucher to use online (and not much space in my rucksack) so I left it. In SB straight away one of the salespeople wandered over, and when I explained what I was looking for they told me they didn’t have any. I found one, but couldn’t be bothered to try it on. Back in St Albans a few days later, I headed into the SB there, and the salesperson pretty much told me the same thing. I then found two different styles of tops that had the waistband (despite being told they had none…)- I tried them on but they were way too long so it was no good.  I really like the top I have from there but the people in the stores just put me off.

While I was in St Albans I popped into a cook shop and added to my baking collection. I have a great brownie tin and I sometimes double recipes but then I have to use different sized or shaped pans which makes it harder to judge timings. I found one but it was too long, so the lady went off to check, saying she might be able to order it in, but then ended up finding one in the back. I also got a square pan (and then wondered after if I should have bought two of those too). At least I have a photo now so I can refer to that if I need to.

Running and yoga for the last couple of weeks has not been going that well. While in Scotland we did a lot of walking and I seem to have bruised my heel- it’s fine all day but then by the evening it gets a bit sore, so I have missed a few runs to try and give it time to heal.

I did a short run on the Thursday after we got back, did parkrun on Saturday (but felt really sick at the finish line even though I hadn’t gone fast). I did the London 10 miles on Sunday, then rested on the Monday. I missed the club run on Tuesday, going out on my own for a few miles instead, and got caught in a massive rain shower close to the finish- I tried to take a photo to show how soaked I was but I didn’t come out that well!

Wednesday was lovely yoga- I am starting to see a little more progress which is great (I can get my forehead onto the floor in child’s pose now which is probably the norm for most people but for a person as stiff as a board it is great).

On Thursday and Friday we had a couple of long walks in the evening instead of having a run.

On Wednesday this week I was on a course which finished early, so on my way home I stopped off at a garden centre. It was lovely weather and I took my time wandering around- it’s always such a calm place to be.

Our garden had no lavender (which surprised me- I thought everyone would have it) and I have wanted to get some for ages so I bought a couple of them plus a hollyhock and a poppy.

I then had a good hour outside pottering in the garden, planting them up and doing a bit of weeding.

St Albans parkrun at the start

This week on Saturday my car was having a service in St Albans, so I dropped it off on Saturday morning, ran the mile to parkrun, and met my dad there. My cow cowl had arrived earlier in the week (you can buy one when you are on the 20 UK events table) and at first I thought it was for when you are being a parkrun tourist, but on the facebook group I was told it could be worn at local parkruns too, as then tourists will know to come and chat to you.

It was a hot morning and so busy (400+, which is now small for St Albans)- it’s on narrow paths so it did feel very busy. We finished in just over 28 minutes after picking up the pace- it’s three laps and on the third we had had enough of looking at the lake, even though we did see goslings and coot chicks. It was nice to go back (St Albans was where I started parkrunning) but once a year is good enough. The trouble is more and more keep coming so balancing time with local and far away ones gets harder.

It was very hot and even though I wore the cowl on my wrist it wasn’t ideal summer attire- maybe I need to tie it to my top or something. The lady who was bar code scanning spotted it and we briefly chatted about touristing, so it does work!

Dad took me back to theirs so I could have a shower (I’d taken a rucksack with me)- Mum cooked pancakes filled with raspberries, mango and creme fraiche, before Dad took me into town to collect my car. (I was about to get in the shower when the phone rang- I very much hoped that the lady calling from the garage could not tell that I had no clothes on!)

On my way home I drove past Bunnings (which used to be Homebase and has caused much excitement among the people of St Albans)- we tried to go once before but it was queued out onto the road. This time it wasn’t so busy so I popped in and bought a few more plants- a couple of tiny lavender plants to go into the ground, and a poppy.

After ploughing through my work on Saturday afternoon, I had a bit of time to do a bit of planting before I had to walk into town for a hair cut.

Also, look at who visited one evening! This was only about 8.30pm but it’s so light now, so I could see two of the fox cubs so clearly. They were watching a pigeon on the fence and it was very funny to see them jump when the pigeon flapped about.

On Sunday morning I wanted to make a cake as Andy’s parents were coming over later, so we walked around to Morrison’s to get a few ingredients, and you may have guessed it, bought yet more plants. They actually water their plants (unlike a lot of supermarkets) and so they had a lot of shoots on them. We also had a voucher so we got about 3 plants free. We then spent more time in the garden lifting out some huge lumps of granite that were in one of the flower beds, and then filling in the holes with the new plants.

Huge rocks!

It may not look like much but we added two poppy plants, two lavender plants, a clump of agapanthus, and two fox gloves (they had seeded themselves into pots). Hopefully there will be a lot more colour here soon.

Do you tend to always go to one parkrun or do you have a few local ones now? Do you like sales people who come up to you or ones who hang back? I don’t want to be pounced on as soon as I come into a shop, but I do like a bit of help without feeling the pressure to always buy something. Do you like buying plants? I find garden centres very calming and I get tempted very easily (as you can see!).

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4 thoughts on “My cow cowl, garden centre visits, unhelpful sales people and local parkruns”

  1. Unhelpful sales people are the worst – it definitely puts me off from buying. Although over attentive is sometimes worst, I’ve been pounced on in a few shops here and I usually get flustered and just walk out as I hate being watched as I browse, it’s so awkward!

    1. It’s true- I don’t want to be watched either, but I like people around just in case, and it’s nice when they say hello to you as then you know you can approach if you want help.

  2. Reading your blog has made me feel quite lazy and tired, you have been really busy recently! As you know, I always go to to the same local parkrun. I’ve always had positive experiences in Lululemon; the sales people have been attentive but not too attentive. Last time I walked into Sweaty Betty I was completely ignored by three different members of staff. I get that I’m 38 with grey(ish) hair and not very athletic looking at the moment, but I didn’t like being ignored. I don’t think I’ll risk being ignored again, there are plenty of Sweaty Betty alternatives. I love gardening, garden centres and buying plants.

    1. Yup- it seems to me that Lululemon will win for me over SB any day now.
      I don’t know if I have been that busy- I just ended up putting a couple of weeks of stuff into one blog post!

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