Slow and Steady

Archive for the ‘Shopping’ Category

I went to the Aztec Centre today. The website says

The Aztec Centre in Croydon has the largest selection of assisted living and mobility aids in the area.


I went there to get a stick with a stool. When I’m walking I tend to stop a lot because it hurts my back. I tend to lean forward to stretch my back. I thought having a stick with a stool would be handy. When I get to the centre, there is a young lady who was very friendly and came to help me straight away.

Then it all went a bit wrong.

She showed me the 2 styles of stool sticks they stock and told me quite bluntly that they were both rubbish and a waste of money.  I appreciate her honesty, but I couldn’t help but be upset. I didn’t say anything to her because it’s not her fault, she’s just selling them.

Truthfully though, I did cuss her out on the way home in my car. I thought that if she knows a product is crap, why isn’t she reporting it and getting something done?

Then I remembered the amount of times I used to complain about products at my old workplace that were rubbish, and the powers that be never responded.

This pisses me off though. This place is The largest selection of assisted living and mobility aids in the area.

Yet they have only 2 styles, and each of them are rubbish? Fix the fuck up.

I know I can buy it online, but there are things that you do need to see. If I had bought either one of those sticks online, they would have both needed to be sent back. That is not always free. Also, lets remember a lot of the people who need these aids may be elderly and not have computer access.

On one, the actual stick on one wasn’t wide enough  have a solid base. It was more of a long umbrella width than a stick. The other seat was low, made from elastic, and hard to get up off.

I know everyone’s conditions are different but I honestly don’t know who would find those helpful. The assistant knows that they are not helpful. So do something about it.

I’m going to send this post to their customer service department. Will anything change? Who knows, but at least I know I tried.

This, coupled with the wheelchair scenario and the fact my room still hasn’t been hoovered over 10 days later has left me in a  bad state today.

Bed time for me.


I needed to get a couple of storage boxes from Ikea. Now I’m sure anyone who goes to Ikea knows that the place is always busy. I looked online to see if I could get them delivered, but it wasn’t worth it and I do only live 15 minutes (by car) away from it.

I decided to go on the access page, and I saw the little wheelchair sign. So I rang them, and it turns out they have motorised wheelchairs! I was so happy… No SERIOUSLY happy. The last time I went to Ikea I ended up being carted out on a trolley cause my back had seized up, and I never went back.

So I got there, and the people on the customer service desk were lovely and supplied me with a chair, I had to leave my car key with them though. I was shown where the lift was, and off I scooted.

That’s when it all started to go wrong.

The main aisle was OK, but if I wanted to look in any of the show homes I had to leave the chair because it can’t fit.

Guess how I found that out?

By getting stuck in the 1 bedroom house show home.

I was there for ages, and eventually tried to reverse back out the way I came. That’s when I heard a really awful sound. These chairs have a noise to indicate reversing. Now Sainsbury’s chair has a nice beep, this one was loud enough to tell Pluto I’m reversing! It was awful I didn’t even want to press it.

Once I got out of there, there were loads of  boxes of stuff to be put out in my way, so I had to manoeuvre my way round them. The lever to move started hurting my hand, and when I got to the lift to go downstairs to pay, I found out it was out of order and had to go all the way back to the first one. Not impressed at all. The actual staff were lovely, but if you’re going to provide a service, do it properly, or don’t do it at all.

I bought a Silvercrest mixer from Lidl last year It’s fantastic and is really helpful as I can’t do lots of whipping and mixing without my back and neck hurting.

As I mentioned in this post, I had been sent a new one back in January, That one has now broken as mentioned in this post, and I got a new one today.

Yes, the quality isn’t the greatest, but they are replacing them with no question so I don’t mind at all.

I decided that I want to buy the Paul McKenna I can make you thin journal. Now before I had to start watching the pennies, I would have gone straight to Amazon. Now what I done was went to Amazon and as of today (29 September) it’s £8.49 however there is a used one in the market place for £4 including postage.

I then went to Play to see how the price compares to Amazon, and it’s also £8.49, but has one in its marketplace at £3.42.

If it was still around the £4 bracket, I would go to to see if there is one there, as all the books are £3.75, but as I have one that is cheaper than that there’s no point.

Next stop is ebay, and I change the search so that the price and postage costs are at the lowest first. I was watching one that started at 99p, and then it went over the price of the one on

I’ve now bought that one, saving myself £5.07.

I’ve had my N95 for about 2 years now, and want to upgrade as the back of the phone is being held on with cellotape, and the camera flash has stopped working. Thing is, I don’t want to tie myself into a contract. Also the phone I’m using for my Tesco PAYG chip is so bulky that I can’t carry about as it makes my bag heavy. This means I’m dialing 0870 numbers from my main mobile which defeats the object of having the PAYG.

So I’ve decided I’m happy getting 2 used phones, and have decided to look on ebay so I can get it as cheaply as possible. I’m used to Nokia’s and Ericsson’s, so I’m going to be getting one of these.

I’ve set up some searches and have saved them, butt I’m getting frustrated because when I look at the completed items, I’m seeing phones in my price range that didn’t show up on the search. It’s very very annoying.


Finally after months of searching, I have a car. I’m so pleased because that means that I have a bit of my independence back and will work towards being able to drive long distances again.

I ended up getting it from Leeds from an ad I saw on ebay. As soon as I saw it I knew it was the one.

I had a bit of palaver getting the money out from my bank though, I didn’t realise that you need to order money if you are taking out more than £500.

Anyway it’s been so well looked after, I even have the original recipe for the car when it was new! I have named my baby Chilli, and will definitely look after this one better than my Corsa.


So far this year I bought a used laptop, a 2nd hand bed, and now a used car.

As I bought the car for less than the budget I decided to treat myself to a brand new entertainment system that has everything: Bluetooth so I can hear my phone calls and any music on my phone over my car speakers, a usb port so I can plug in a flash drive and listen to music,  and an aux facility to plug in a mp3 player. I was going to buy it from Halfords and get it fitted there too.

I went to my local one and spoke to one of the audio fitters, and he didn’t seem very clued up, I really didn’t trust this person to touch the electrics of my car.

I went on Ebay, and found the same set I was looking at for half the price, it’s used, and still had a 6 month warranty. I found a local audio fitter on Google. When I phoned to ask for prices the man told to me come in before I buy the set to make sure it can be done as the car is old.

I was very happy with the attention to detail he gave, and he showed me the 2 ways he could install it. I went with the cheaper version which means that the old system will still be there, so if I decide to sell Chilli, I could take the system out and rewire the old one to work again.

The cost of the used system and fitting is less than the cost of the new system in Halfords!

The set came on Friday and I went straight to the fitters and it was done within half an hour. I drove home listening to songs on my phone via bluetooth, and even took a call. They said they could hear me clearly which I was very happy about.

Second hand doesn’t always mean that they’ll be cheaper though. As I explained when I bought my laptop, there were cheaper ones that I could buy new, but I’d much rather buy something used, that has won lots of plaudits, and awards, than a cheap new product that is going to fall apart in a year.

However in other cases, when the new ones aren’t going to last that long anyway, I’m all for buying cheap stuff. I looked for car mats, and Argos ended up being the best place for them.

I definitely think that it’s worth looking for a second hand version first.

A few weeks ago when I stayed at my flat to get away from the world, I decided that when I move back, I’m going to utilise all the secondhand furniture that it is possible to get nowadays.

Last night, I was sitting on my bed, and felt the base drop and break. When I laid down, my legs are a lot further down than the rest of my body. I’m sure that it will be no surprise when I say my back and neck are very stiff and painful this morning.

I immediately started to look for a new one, as a bed is really important for the health, especially as my neck and back aren’t 100% anyway. They were all really expensive, then I remembered my decision to look at second hand goods first.

I was dubious about using a mattress that someone else had used, until I remembered that I used to stay in hotels for work weekly, and they definitely didn’t change the mattress when each guest checked out!

The first place I had a look at is Freecycle and there were a couple of beds in my area, but they were doubles not singles. Next was Ebay, there were none in my area, that would be ending today. Gumtree didn’t have anything either, and I was starting to think I was going to have to shell out for a new one.

Then I remembered that my old flatmate gave her furniture to charity, there was nothing wrong with any of them, but she was downsizing.

So I went to the  Oxfam site. Luckily there is a furniture shop not too far from my home. I phoned them up and they had 3 single beds in store. I got my dad to give me a lift there, and found a comfy looking bed (they were all stood up, so no chance of trying it before buying), for £24.99. It has storage underneath, which is something the old bed didn’t have.

I’ve just woken up from a nap on it, and I’m very pleased with my purchase.

They had some lovely items, and will definitely be using it when I move back home.