I was stressed about going. It felt like a great mountain to scale. What would it be like, queues all through the car park? And then when we got there, nothing. No one there. So there we were standing outside the doors at 5.50 am, waiting. It looks well stocked at least, he said. A member of staff turned up and pulled aside the doors. Better wait for the manager to open them officially, he said. Yes, we said. By 6.05 I was abuzz with agitation. I just want to get it over with, I said. So he stepped forward and pulled aside the doors, and we went in. This is OK, I said, where is everybody? We went our separate ways, he going to one end I to the other. It must’ve been five minutes later that one of the staff, the one with the ponytail, asked how I’d got in. Had they opened the doors? he asked. I don’t know, I said, feeling my nose start to lengthen. Then he said, it’s just that we’re not meant to open until 8. My heart sank. Then the manager turned up, followed by him, looking a little nervous that I might lose it. There were no signs, I said. There are, she said, and we played it over the tannoy all last week. She was very nice about it, wheeling my trolley-full away to put behind the customer service desk. What a bugger. I don’t think I can go through that again, I said to him. Let me do it, he said. What a love. And he is going to do it too. Soon. I feel bad letting him, but perhaps it is best. I am useless at this loss of control over the life I live. It’s the minutiae that gets me. The bigger stuff I am better at. Mind you, that will come. That will come. So I got home feeling at a loss and did a meditation. And promptly fell asleep. It’s all sliding. The structure has gone flaccid. What am I, anymore?

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.