So what is it with hot water bottles this year? My brother suggests my daughter buys his son a hot water bottle for Christmas. Sounds easy, I think… Until i have to trawl the shops. I look everywhere. Every supermarket that I happened to shop in over the last fortnight (and even some that I stopped at for the very purpose). I make a special evening trip to a big, ugly out-of-town shopping centre on a big, ugly evening last week. Still no bottle to be found. Every shop says they either had a huge range but now they don’t, or they never had a huge range in the first place.
There are two theories going on here. Perhaps everyone’s home is now too warm for hot water bottles so fewer companies are producing them. Or perhaps because of rising fuel bills everyone is buying a bottle for their loved one this Christmas.
Anyway, I go on searching. I ask friends if they have seen any bottles. I search the internet. And finally, afer putting in a call to a branch of Boots in Glasgow, I come across a couple of “left-over” hotties, either Sean the Sheep or some kind of piggy-wig. So I dispatch a reluctant husband during his lunch hour to quickly snap up a Sean the Sheep.
Brilliant, I think. Job done, I imagine. All my pressies ticked off, I congratulate myself. But sadly when the husband brings home the Sheep hottie it is minus the actual hot water bottle. “Didn’t you think I’d need one of those too?” I ask.
“I thought you’d know that it didn’t gave a bottle in it,” he mutters.
“Couldn’t you have called me from the shop to check?” I retort in frustration.
“Well, no, I didn’t think of that,” he mumbles.
So yesterday afternoon I set off to hunt for a basic, straightforward rubber bottle to fit inside Sean the Stupid Sheep. But neither of our local Chemists had such a thing.
Today, in Tesco, I ask a shop assistant but she says they don’t have plain bottles, and they’ve run out of novelty ones (Yes, I know that, I seethe). Nor does the nearby small branch of Boots stock plain bottles.
In a final search-for-the-blasted-bottle bid this afternoon I enter another Chemists in another nearby high street. But the shop assistant said they do not sell the inners either. “However, we do have some really nice novelty covers with the bottles inside,” she says.
Right, I think, Ok. Now what do I do?
I buy the eerie-looking Eeyore (with bottle included) – and I take it home to meet Sean the Stupid Sheep. And then I try to work out how to tell the husband that he’ll need to make another trip to the Boots near his work. (He’s going to go baa-rmy!)