When my eldest was about two months old, we were at the checkout in our local Sainsbury’s waiting to pay. I was bagging up shopping.
That week, I had read a story in the newspaper about a super market worker finding a scorpion in a box of bananas.
As I but some bananas in my trolley, I wondered to myself how awful it must be finding a tropical creature and shuddered as the bunch went in. This was definitely on my mind.
Cut back to the check out. My daughter was in one of the supermarket’s baby holders in the trolley and, just as I was going to pay, a ‘Scorpion’ started crawling across the back of the baby seat.
Cue a neurotic, sleep deprived mother having a panic attack, hyperventilating, sobbing and screaming.
At this point, I’d say the whole of Sainsbury’s and its workers were staring at me as I shrieked ‘there’s a scorpion crawling towards by baby.’
The man behind calmly went to look, picked it off the trolley and dryly said ‘it’s an earwig.’
Well. Have you ever seen an earwig?
They totally look like scorpions. I was still a mess but now with relief that a scorpion was not going to inject venom into my newborn.
Bless her, the lovely lady on check-out left her seat and came and gave me a hug and I declared the man behind as my hero, much to the amusement of his wife. I think I scurried off pretty sharpish when it was all over.
I think it may have been prudent to avoid sensationalist stories so close to having had a baby and to proceed with caution when reading such things anyway. I have since familiarised myself with earwigs as they do look a lot like scorpions but when I see one, I always think of this story.