How not to buy petrol.

Another day, another tank of petrol to fill. I pulled into our little local petrol station, which I rarely use as it is a bit more expensive than the one on the main road. I swung into position next to pump one, nearest to the petrol station door. The pump was switched on as I placed the nozzle into the filler entrance. It whirred away encouragingly, but nothing happened. I wondered if it was my fault, took out the nozzle and looked at it (sometimes that helps) then tried again. Still nothing. I was going to have to go inside. It was a worried looking, middle aged lady behind the counter inside,  not the usual badger haired girl who I say hello to when she walks her Staffordshire bull terrier.  The new lady was busy serving a customer and having trouble with the till roll.
“I can’t get any petrol out of that pump.”
“You’ll have to try number two. Go behind that blue car. It’s just going.”
She pointed helpfully towards the pump where the blue car was standing. I trotted back outside obediently, moved forward so that the taxi driver behind me could take my place and waited for the blue car to move. Eventually I realised that the driver of the car was waiting for me to leave and waved her on. She drove off shaking her head at me. I backed into the second of the four pumps as directed, got out of the car and prepared to try again. The taxi driver was already using the pump that I had left. I felt that I should be helpful.
“There’s no unleaded in that pump.”
He glared at me as if I had just said the stupidest thing in the entire world.
“I want diesel.”
The middle aged lady switched on pump number two from inside. I put the nozzle hopefully into the tank. Eighteen pence worth of petrol trickled out, then………. nothing. I glanced towards the window. The lady was staring at her till roll helplessly. I wasn’t walking all the way back in there. There was another pump. I reversed into position to try for a third time. The lady looked up from her till roll for long enough to switch it on, and by some miracle of modern engineering (a miracle which I no longer took for granted) it managed to dispense fifteen pounds worth of unleaded petrol on demand. I trudged back inside.
“I got a few pence worth of petrol out of the second pump.”
“I know love. Number three is the only one working.”
There were so many possible answers to this comment that I failed miserably to choose any of them. I just stood and stared. She met my gaze sadly.
“It’s not my day today. It’s all make do and mend round here.

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4 comments on “How not to buy petrol.

  1. really nice that Pat with a great last line 🙂

  2. patricia1957 says:

    Thank you Elizabeth. It all happened yesterday- exactly as I have reported it, 😀

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