Wow, what an experience! So as a starter to my tale I should say, for the first few weeks of my American life, I have been purchasing my groceries either on the fly at the little corner shop at the end of my street or by going to the bigger overpriced organic grocery store near by.
Today, however, I decided to venture out and visit one of those Mega Marts I’d seen on American TV as a kid, in the hope that prices wouldn’t be half as bad. I was to be slightly disappointed when I found my nearest ‘super’ market – it wasn’t a Mega Mart, it wasn’t even a Lidl or Netto – it was Food Bazaar off Myrtle Ave!
Upon first impression, it was a slightly run down, cramp, decrepit hole. To be honest, my first impression were not far wrong.
Maneuvering through the aisles with my basket (I had no hope in hell with a trolley) was like playing Mario Kart at 3am after 12 pints and a dirty kebabland work of joy. Often on a Sunday mid-morning visit to Tesco, down Bromley by Bow, you’d have the odd kid running wild – this place was like a creche with all the kids high off some E number. Joy.
Foodwise, to give the place some kinda credit, was fairly decent. A wide selection of produce. Only problem I found is that I didn’t know what would taste like spaz. The pictures on boxes and tins gave no real indication of what was a high brand, or what could possibly be shavings off the local mortuary floor. I could try going for the brands I knew, but you’d be paying double the price – and the prices were quite high as it was. Point to note, cheese & bagels will need reconsidering next time – price far too high for the amount of crappy orange cheese and bagels purchased.
After 20 minutes of living hell, I decided that maybe I have enough food to last me a fair amount of time before having to visit this place again, I ventured towards the checkout. Chaos ensured as I came within view of the checkouts. The cramped constraints I found previously were much worse towards the front of the store. Trolleys piled high with various amounts of crappy food products, trolley after trolley. I finally found myself a queue, which obviously didn’t move for 15 minutes.
I almost gave up on my basket and hightail it outta the place, but I noticed a space open up a few aisles down, quickly stepping in to fill the space and I was now only three baskets from the front of the checkout. I could almost smell the freedom.
To my joy, the queue moved at a steady pace until I was finally face to face with my checkout lady. It was my time to shine, my time to live the american dream, my tim….oh it’s just like the UK…except with out a friendly, cheery waitrose checkout lady smiling back at you. Although, they did double bag my stuff – silver lining and all that. Scanning my bank card I was quickly outta the place and heading home. Unpacking my stuff I realised that just like the UK, never go shopping with a hunger on. Just don’t do it. You get home and see you’ve bought a bunch of schiz that you’ll never eat, they’ll sit in your fridge or cupboard to be forgotten about, however, at the prices I paid today I’ll ensure that some how I’ll eat just about everything & anything.
Next time, I think I’ll stick with my overpriced organic grocery store…. although there are rumours that there’s an altogether different type of super market a few blocks away and with a name like Associated Supermarket how could I go wrong….
To be continued….