One of my minor obsessions on a day when I have time, is to make the most of my Boots Advantage card. Now, I am not as bad as some, because there are whole web sites dedicated to helping people make the most of this bit of plastic. We all know that there isn't such thing as a free gift anymore, but by using points on an Advantage Card wisely and well, it is amazing what you can do. Pay money for certain things and get enough points back to buy something else, double your points, get free gifts when you spend so much - and points. Indeed, as one of my friends commented recently, why do I need all those toiletries - why the answer is plain and simple, to enable me to get Advantage Card points so I can buy more! Yes, bargain hunting in Boots can become an obsession.
How crazy is that? Being obsessed by a chemist! When you consider the extent of the Boots range it is easy to see how much we can buy for all sorts of ways of tending our body - whether we want to moisturise it, or remove the oil, smooth it or paint it, heal it or mend it, reduce it or colour it, make it smell nice or even taste nice.....
When it comes to our health there are also vitamins and tonics, pills and medicine, even about six different types of cough mixture depending on what cough you have. There are behind the counter drugs, or pharmacist prepared drugs or those freely available. What choice we have.
Today we are asked to think about all the unused medicines we keep in our cupboards and give 10p for every packet. Looking in mine, I have a lot....just like the toiletries, they are there just in case.
When a lot of the world's poorest people live with illness or disability without a chemist for miles, I realise my wealth. Tied up in bottles and boxes waiting to be used and tied up in a little piece of plastic, which very powerfully entices me to buy even more.