Lackagh Life –

I went to a shop once and asked a fella working if they had any “Tofu” and he replied: ‘Is that the fake meat?’
This is what I was thinking about when Michelle asked me to pick her up some UHT Milk. A dodgy idea at the best of times, worse on a Bank Holiday Sunday. Skeleton staff. Outer Galway. The rest of the country drunk or getting there. Walked around. Couldn’t see it anywhere. Went to one of the staff and she said: ‘Oh…UHT??’
She was on her knees. Stacking Jaffa Cakes.
‘Yeah, it’s a type of milk.’
She thought about this. Then a light bulb flashed behind her eyes and she asked: ‘Have you tried by the Milk section?’
‘Yeah, it’s not there, though. I don’t think it’s refrigerated stuff. Should be on a shelf I think.’
She scratched her knee. Looked at the Custard Creams, then asked: ‘Hmm…do you happen to know what UHT stands for, or means, or….?’
‘Haven’t a clue. Just someone asked me to pick up a carton of it. Said it might be around the coffees.’
‘The coffees?’
She stood up. ‘Oh I don’t think so….there’s some Rice milk and stuff over here. We can check.’
We went to check.


It wasn’t there. She went for back up.  He arrived and said: ‘Were you looking for UHT?’
‘I was.’
‘And can you not find it?’
‘Have you tried the milk section?’
‘I have.’
‘And it wasn’t there?’
Would it be in powder form?’
‘I don’t think so.’
‘Let’s check around by the coffees.’
We went back to the coffees. Hummedd. AAHEd…searched. No sign. He rubbed his chin. A real conundrum. Then: ‘Maybe we don’t sell it?’
‘She got it here before.’
‘Oh. Do you know where she picked it up, like, on what shelf?’
‘She said around the Coffees.’
‘Oh. UHT. UHT….hmm…sorry about this.’
‘It’s ok. I’ll go back to the Rice Milk in case I missed it there.’
‘That’s probably your best bet.’
Went back to the Rice Milk. Checked out Soya, Alpro, Almond, Oat Dream, Wheatgrass, but no UHT. Was about to give up til the first girl came back. Asked: ‘Any luck?’
‘That’s mad now. I wouldn’t have a clue about that sorta thing.’
‘I s’pose.’
‘Hang on, there’s something here. Would this be it?’

‘Eh…No, I don’t think so.’
‘That’s good, so.’
‘Why’s that good.’
‘Cos that stuff costs Seventeen Euro.’
‘Oh fuck.’
‘Yeah! Anyway. Sorry.’
‘You’re grand. Thanks anyway.’

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