Saturday, October 15, 2011

It’s not my birthday.

But it’s coming up.


When we had an apartment in Horseheads, New York,  I’d shop at Tops from time to time,  and after the first visit or two,  I realised that I was missing out on the “deals” by not having a “customer card”.

The arrow on that Google map there isn’t quite on the money,  but it’s close enough.

So the deal was,  you could sign up for this discount card type of thing,  and they’d send you a couple little key fobs in the mail (along with a card I think, but my memory’s dim)  and you’d scan it at the check-out on your way through. 

Then when we went to Puerto Rico,  there was the same sort of arrangement at Pueblo Extra  (there's another link in Spanish if you prefer).

I still have the key fob thingies from each of those places.  Probably no longer valid.  Not quite sure when we’ll be back to Puerto Rico.  My daughter and her husband do slip down to the Tops in the Buffalo area from time to time.    They have their own key fob thingies.


Anyway,  I didn’t see anything like that in the Netherlands,  but it became obvious when we moved here to Wienerland that,  a lot of stores want your loyalty.  So I have member cards from MerkurBilla,  ,  Hintermeyer,  Wine & Co,  Leiner,  Sixt rental cars…

I think I have a Hertz card tucked away somewhere too. 

So,  with the rental car companies,  I suppose they do give discounts from time to time,  but the use of the card mostly means I don’t have to go through the annoying ordeal of giving them a bunch of info any time we happen to fly to a location and rent a car.  They scan the card or whatever,  and that’s about it.  With Hintermeyer,  you get a small discount each time you use the card,  even over and above a “sale” price.  I’ll take it.

Billa and Merkur tend to track your purchases,  which is why last week I got a coupon for 15% off this particular coffee that Travelling Companion drinks at work.   This time it was from Billa.  The last time it was from Merkur.  I only bought three or four at the Merkur,  and the lady at the check-out said I could have bought a whole skid if I wanted to.  No point in being greedy.  Somebody has to carry it.

The other rather curious thing is,  in a similar fashion to most anything you have to fill out over here,  they want you to include your birth date.  At first I wasn’t really too thrilled with that idea,  but then discovered that I’d get this nice little letter just before my birthday,  with a coupon for 10% off any and everything I could possibly carry out of the store. 



Of course you have to realise we’re on foot here,  and I only have two arms,  so they’re not exactly giving away the store or anything but again,  I’ll take it.

It then so happens that,  as I normally do when a guest or guests have gone on their merry way,  I was about to strip the bed in the spare room that Nan had been using,  and realised that some books seemed to be missing from their usual spot on the top of the dresser.   Seemed odd.   But it turns out,  it was a little ploy that Nan had come up with to get me to poke my nose into one of the drawers.  At least that’s my theory.  I haven’t asked her.

So that’s where I found the “missing” books,  along with a little surprise.




Well,  isn’t that nice!


Of course,  now that I’ve very publicly said that there’s something in there that I can’t open until the 19th,  then I guess that really means I can’t open it until the 19th.   No worries.



And now,  for your further amusement, (assuming you’ve been even remotely amused up to this point)  here’s a picture of the Opera,  that I took Friday morning on my way back from the airport.





Never hurts to have a random picture.


Keep it between the ditches.


Thanks for stopping by.





  1. well now we all know when you birthday is!!!

  2. Gah! I did think after posting that, that I should have left the picture so it would only be "small"...
    Oh well.
    Pretty much every bureaucrat and store in Austria seems to know when my birthday is, so I guess it's not that big a deal.

  3. What a nice surprise to find tucked away in a drawer!

    Happy 'early' Birthday!!

  4. The little things make life special...

  5. Well isn't Nan the sweetheart leaving you a surprise. Hope you share it with us.

  6. Happy Birthday for the 19th. I enjoyed reading your blog!


Well, I've been getting too many spam comments showing up. Just a drag, so we'll go another route and hope that helps. So, we won't be hearing anything more from Mr. Nony Moose.
I guess I'll just have to do without that Gucci purse.