This blip is obviously taken at IKEA. But don’t be fooled. It’s not the obvious scene of happy shoppers leaving the store - note the absence of any shopping carts!

I had decided that I would brave the crowds and try to do a whole list of errands all in one day. Most of them nothing to do with Christmas. Actually, the places I went were surprisingly quiet including Sainsbury’s. I ended up at IKEA - my fourth and last stop. I was there in time for a very late lunch and I was SO hungry!! I got my tray of food from their restaurant and was JUST picking up my fork when we heard an announcement over the PA system.

“We are experiencing technical difficulties and we need everyone to please exit the store”.

Eventually we realised that meant the restaurant too! Nooooo!!! So off we went! Well, I’ve never had to evacuate a plane in my long career, but now I HAVE had to evacuate IKEA! It was actually quite calm and orderly - not like an aircraft evacuation and we WERE able to bring our belongings! I wish I’d brought my coffee at least! It was cold out there!

After about 20 minutes of hanging around, I was just about to give up and leave when they made an announcement that the staff could now enter and all the shoppers would be let back inside in about 10-15 minutes. So I went to sit in the warmth of my car until I saw everyone else go back in. We had to wait for the restaurant people to get things ready again, but about 45 minutes later I FINALLY got a new tray of food. And of course no charge. Famished!

Having no other errands I allowed myself a good LONG browse through the whole store, something I’ve not done for a long time. I only had one thing on my list, but of course a few more things went into my basket! One has to be prepared for that at IKEA!!

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