Do you make much of a fuss about Valentine's Day? We don't normally in the Troy household. Perhaps that comes of being together now for over twenty years. At the start of our relationship Mrs Troy actually got an artist to prepare a handmade card for me which I still treasure. I was going to photograph it and show it here but rather frustratingly I can't find it. But I do treasure it, honest!
More recently though we haven't exchanged valentine cards or even wedding anniversary cards. It all seems so commercial and the money saved can be put towards a nice meal or the latest Ipswich Town football programme. You may have gathered from reading previous posts that Troy is not one normally to "splash the cash". There is however one thing that I do like more than not spending money and that is buying A Bargain. During the week I was reading my Daily Telegraph when I came across a Marks & Spencer advert for their "Valentine Collection for her". This large advert showed a collection of valentine gifts - a card, a real red rose, Belgian chocolates and some heart motif lingerie for £20. I did a double take. That seems a Real Bargain for £20 I thought and given that it was M&S I was confident that the quality would be fine. So I resolved to surprise Mrs Troy this Valentines Day. Thursday morning saw me going through Mrs Troy's lingerie drawer to make sure I would be buying the correct sizes for the underwear. An alternative, which I first favoured, would have involved lining up several sales assistants in the store and by use of my outstretched hands ascertaining the correct size. However on further consideration I did not think that M&S would encourage, or even approve of this approach.
So armed with the correct sizes I then ventured into the M&S store. If any of you have seen the hilarious Father Ted sketch when the priests find themselves lost in the women's lingerie department then you know how I was feeling. But needs must, so I ventured in bravely. The heart motif underwear along with the cards, roses and chocolates were on clear display. I quickly fumbled my way through first the bras and then the knickers (so no change from usual there then), found the correct sizes and then took the collection to the "Pay Here" area. I did feel self-conscious handing over the bra and knickers. "Do you want a gift receipt so you can bring them back?" asked the assistant. "Just for the underwear" I replied "I don't think she'll be bringing back the chocolates!" I joked with the stern faced assistant. I then brought them home and photographed my bargains. Here they are:-
I then had to wait impatiently until this morning to surprise Mrs Troy. But surprise her I did. First the card, followed swiftly by the rose. "Oh" she said, in a surprised voice. Then came the chocolates and finally a small bag containing the underwear. Think of gobsmacked and then go a level higher. "I haven't got you a card because you said we wouldn't bother" she chided me whilst hastily trying on her new lingerie. However shortly afterwards she handed me a card. Apparently she had bought a card just in case I gave her one (and yes, I mean a card!).
If you were given very expensive silk lingerie or were taken on a romantic weekend to Venice please do not comment to this effect. Mrs Troy is happy so please don't spoil it.