They say old habits die hard. But they don't tell you they can also be quite expensive.

Let me explain.

On Saturday mornings these days I have a set routine. My internal alarm (also known as Warehouse Bladder) wakes me up about 5.30am.

For the next 15 minutes I try to ignore it by fidgeting around in the bed, trying not to wake Mrs P.


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I am usually successful in that regard although I suspect Mrs P would sleep through a nuclear blast and AC/DC playing a gig in the corner.

Mind you, I'd probably be asleep during that too. Sorry AC/DC lovers.

Anyway, while Mrs P remains deep in slumber, George the Dog is usually woken by my movement.

Thankfully he gives it a couple of minutes before taking a flying leap up on to the bed to announce the arrival of a new day.

Inevitably he lands somewhere near my bladder so obviously I then have to get up. Quickly.

So that happens just about every Saturday morning.

And following that preamble I get dressed, make a cuppa and, somewhat embarrassingly, I settle down to watch Country Calendar on early morning telly.


I don't know why I watch that particular programme.

Occasionally it's quite interesting and later in the day I find myself boring Mrs P rigid with explanations of milk solid ratios and the amount of fertiliser you can put on pastures in autumn.

I think, basically, watching it, along with the rest of my Saturday morning routine, has just become habit.

Imagine then what happens when those regular habits and routines get upset. Like last Saturday morning.

Obviously Warehouse Bladder and George got me out of bed as usual but as I stood there making my early morning cuppa I thought I'd change things up a bit.

Mrs P hasn't been well lately so maybe I'd help out by going to get the groceries rather than watching the nation's rural finest on the box.

What's more, if i was quick about it I could be done and home before she woke up.

With the good deed in mind I set off for the early opening supermarket and was soon whipping up and down the basically empty aisles.

My joy at such a cruisey time was improved even further when it emerged the cost of my groceries was a mere $165.19.

I was sure I'd probably missed something, I mean I'm a bloke after all, but in the main I was pretty happy with the whole business.

My happy mood was to continue as I bumped into an old footy mate while wheeling my trolley to the car.

We had a good old natter and catch up, both of us having graduated to the grandparents team these days.

I drove away after a promise to keep in touch better from now on ... as you do.

As I walked though the door at home some 20 minutes later I was looking forward to telling Mrs P who I'd bumped into and all his news.

She was, in equal parts, both delighted and somewhat perplexed.

"So how come you were speaking to him in the supermarket carpark?" she asked.

I started to tell her I'd broken my usual Saturday morning habit and gone to get the groceries. But then I realised I'd got so caught up in the catch-up I'd actually forgotten to put the groceries in the car.

I'd driven off leaving a full trolley of groceries behind.

A quick race back to the supermarket found the groceries gone and me ruing the fact I had broken my usual Saturday morning routine and completely forgotten what I was doing.

And on my return home, tail between my legs, it was obvious there was little point me trying to return to Saturday habits and brighten Mrs P's dark mood with a talk on the amount of fertiliser you can put on pastures during the autumn.

It seems the only fertiliser I will be involved with for a few days yet is that which I've well and truly immersed myself in.

■ Kevin Page is a teller of tall tales with a firm belief too much serious news gives you frown lines. Feel free to share stories to .