Like those restaurants which pride themselves on being rude to their customers, the staff here used to be rather surly, resenting conversation with effete customers who (they sensed) wouldn't know which end of the torque wrench to apply to the wheel nuts. But over the last couple of years they've mellowed, developing customer-facing skills. Reception now has a coffee machine, and they smile as they offer the card reader.
Next was the Rocky Mountain Nurseries, which Clare vaguely thought was off the Old Frome Road somewhere. It looked astonishingly dilapidated as we eventually drew up.
Clare had received a voucher card for £25. She experiences the same frisson of excitement at garden centres as I encounter in bookshops: Rocky Mountain did not disappoint. It's remote, on the Mendip plateau where land is cheap, but the car park was full. A vast expanse of potted plants, ferns and hangar-like polytunnels beckoned: a foraging heaven.
In the end she chose four plants. We staggered under their weight between plots and outbuildings, searching for someone with a cash register. Turned out they didn't take those particular gift cards after all.
Still, one door closes .. .