the sale item that brought more than i’d bargained for

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I gazed around the store in a state of ecstasy, so many bargains, so little time.

Off I tore around the shop floor, grabbing things in Supermarket Sweep fashion.

Sale of the century...or is it?

Sale of the century...or is it?

I lifted a nightie, a handbag, a gold owl ornament and a gold photo frame encrusted with diamond rhinestones. Then I saw something I had actually been looking for, a storm-proof coat for doing the school runs. It was a very expensive brand; I’d been searching them online but dithering about buying one because of the £90 price. I couldn’t believe my luck when I saw the coat priced in the store at just £24.99!

I grabbed if off the rail. I had to buy it immediately before anyone else got their hands on it, there was only one left!

The price was just too good to be true! I paid for my bargains and left on a wave of pure euphoria.

The chemicals in my brain were going barmy after such an exciting shopping spree and best of all, I actually got something I really wanted for a ridiculously low price.

I felt good, so good that I wanted to hit another shop and do it all over again!

Who knew what keenly priced treasures awaited, so I did.

Soon I was the proud owner of a butter dish that announced, ‘butter me up’ on the side, a microwavable bowl for making porridge, a pair of penguin salt and pepper shakers (they sported little hats and were just too cute not to buy!) and a tiny teapot-shaped dish especially for putting your used tea bags in, and let’s face it, who doesn’t need one of those?

The endorphin rush hit me again and I felt on top of the world, not least because I purchased these essentials for next to nothing! Imagine me getting all that stuff for under 20 quid! Thank goodness I didn’t miss out on those bargains!

Stores and online retailers have cunning ways of tapping into our primal psychological impulses and making us stalk those irresistible cheap buys. They play on our fear of missing out. January is prime time for stock that didn’t sell during the after Christmas and post New Year sales.

The impressive differences in the original selling amount and what they are marked down to make us shoppers feel these ‘deals’ are too good to pass up. The truth is it’s not really a deal if you end up buying a load of tat that you never use and have doled out cash you wish you hadn’t.

I recently discovered six forgotten boxes at the bottom of my wardrobe, two contained stiletto boots so high I can’t walk in them, and four housed shoes in vibrant colours that I have never had the confidence to wear. These are the swag from last year’s sales, none have been worn.

I bought them simply because they were dramatically reduced.

Had I been looking at them at full price, frankly, they wouldn’t have interested me.

As it happened the greatly reduced storm-proof coat was a total wash out.

I wore it to go for a walk.

When I returned home I tried to pull down the zip but found it wouldn’t budge.

It was a funnel neck and I had zipped it to the top so I couldn’t even get my arms out and bring it over my head.

I began to panic, my son tried to get me out but to no avail.

I toyed with going to the neighbours, though I don’t know them well and would have felt silly admitting I was trapped in my coat.

I tried putting a coat hanger in the zip and tugging, but no joy! I lay on the floor and attempted in desperation to wriggle out. Then my son seemed to have an epiphany.

“Wait mum, don’t move, I’ll be back in a minute,” he yelled excitedly. Thank God he’s got a plan to get me out, I thought with relief.

He came back with my mobile phone and began to film my Houdini act.

“This is epic mum!” he announced.

I sighed with frustration. Two hours later, dripping with sweat, crying and in the midst of a panic attack, I had to cut myself out of my fabulous bargain. No wonder it was so cheap! It’s right what they say, if something seems too good to be true it probably is.

So much for my bargain coat, though my son claims I was trending on YouTube!