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The Unsung Hero of Supermarket Parking Has Spent 6 Years to Park in Every Spot

Finding an empty parking spot can be a discouraging, frustrating, and at times, fruitless task. Out in Bromley in Greater London, UK lives the unsung hero of supermarket parking. His name is Gareth Wild, and he spent the last six years of his life completing what he describes as his parking “opus.”
Man completes mission of parking in every spot on the lot outside supermarket after 6 years 5 photos
Man completes mission of parking in every spot on the lot outside supermarket after 6 yearsMan completes mission of parking in every spot on the lot outside supermarket after 6 yearsMan completes mission of parking in every spot on the lot outside supermarket after 6 yearsMan completes mission of parking in every spot on the lot outside supermarket after 6 years
For all those times when you felt like a hobby or an obsession was taking over your life, Gareth Wild would like to tell you a story. Six years ago, while loading groceries into his car outside Sainsbury’s in Bromley, he found himself wondering about how it would feel if he were able to park in every single spot. That is to say, what would it be like if, instead of hunting for empty spots, he invested the time and effort into completing this challenge?

Once home, he tells KentOnline, he looked at the aerial map of the parking lot and, eliminating the spaces reserved for the disabled and motorcycles, but including those reserved for families, he counted 211 bays. He assumed he could complete the mission in four years’ time, with just one weekly grocery run.

Six years later (thank 2020 for that), Wild has completed his mission, as he proudly announced on Twitter earlier this week. He’s gone through three cars in the meantime and many shopping outings with out-of-patience kids, screaming that their dad was taking too long waiting for a particular bay to open.

Wild’s challenge, or “opus” as he calls it, is more impressive than just for the dedication he’s shown in pursuing it. He approached it practically, with spreadsheets and a diagram of all the available bays, ticking off units with each visit. For those bays that seemed more in demand and he rarely found open, he had to organize special, late-hour runs.

Wild works in filmmaking and producing, so he knows how insane and possibly stupid his mission sounds, even though he’s now praised as the unsung hero of supermarket parking. “I find enjoyment in the little banal things in life,” he says with self-irony. “I wanted to go into it fairly clued up, because when you're doing something this daft it's important to be thorough.”

And thorough he was. For fellow daredevils looking to replicate his challenge at the same supermarket, he’s offering his diagrams and methodology on social media. You can find it in the gallery above.





 
 
 
 
 

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