You forget that grocery stores in your home country don't smell like this.
You forget that it's not normal to see rats racing across the ceiling beams in your home country.
You forget that even though all bell peppers begin the same color and change as they grow on the vine, that same process doesn't happen in the local grocery store, although local store owners believe that it does.
Living on a remote island has taught me that I will always love the hunt for a good find at the best price.
I enjoy [when the internet cooperates] finding the cheapest plane tickets. I don't mind sitting for a couple hours in the local travel agency buying tickets for myself or friends, as long as I get a good deal and can exchange my current ticket if a better one comes up before my travel date.
I enjoy finding discounted items at the grocery store. Another part of the "fun" is not knowing the actual price of anything until you get the register and the cashier rings it up.
Animal crackers for Kate- only 7,000 rupiah (roughly 70 cents) for a pack of 8, don't mind if I do!
Imported granola bars from Australia- only 20,000 rupiah (roughly $2) for a pack of- I don't care, they're from Australia!!
Our favorite fresh chocolate milk 70% off!! I'll take two, I think we can chug all this "Choco-Malt" before the expiration date of the 20th. [And we did!] This is not an item they have all the time, so it was a treat.
I guess living here there are always some risks that need to be taken when buying these discounted items. I *thought* I enjoyed finding a good deal, until last week...
I'm strolling through the store with Baby Kate in the baby carrier strapped on my front side. She was fussy and honestly, having a toddler directly screaming in your face is enough to make anyone crazy, even though it's your fault because you strapped them in facing you... I will learn some day.
Anyway, K had skipped a morning nap and was like her Momma and instead of sleeping chose to stare out the window watching people and the city pass her by... needless to say, she was in need of a nap. She was screaming, screaming, screaming and then she "relieved" herself on me and felt much better. Thankfully we can't tell the difference between urine on the front of your shirt and sweat... so we went on our way. I'm running around like I'm on the old game show "Supermarket Sweep" trying to get the items on my mental list with an upset baby and a urine/sweat soaked shirt...
I broke the plastic seal off, preparing to have my tastebuds tickled by this new discounted find...
ummm.... oh, noooooooooooooo.
when I ran by the dairy section and saw this discount staring me in the face...
70% off!! For a cream cheese spread!! Yes, green peppercorn?? That might go well with some ritz crackers... let's get it! So in the cart it went, as we sprinted our cart toward the register, where a really nice lady behind me helped me move my stuff from my cart to the register.
The following day I wanted to crack open the [potentially] delicious green peppercorn cheese spread and eat it with ritz crackers, tomatoes, and cheese slices- an edified toddler lunch for me :)
ummm.... oh, noooooooooooooo.
Thoughts tripped through my mind-Hmmmmm... how BAD is this?
Really, can I just scrape it off? (this is a sign of how long we've lived here and if you knew how often I said this we may not be friends much longer...)
Can I save any of it?
Will we die if we eat this?? (This may be a relationship deal breaker too...)
Oh, wait... is this what green peppercorn looks like?? I've never seen it before...
No, that's definitely mold...
How much did I *actually* pay for this?
I was relieved to see I had paid less than $2 and decided the return trip, which takes about an hour, wasn't worth it. After all another "risk" of living here is there are rarely refunds given. Josh was at a hardware store buying screws. He had just handed the worker his money and realized these were the wrong screws. The lady would not return his money or allow him to exchange them, he had to buy new screws. Although we have had two incidences where we were refunded money or allowed to put it towards a different purchase- a generator and a wireless modem.
Have I learned my lesson? No. I mean, I will most likely buy another dairy product at discounted prices. Although I may crack open every discounted item to see if there is mold in there before I buy it... who knows.
So be thankful for your grocery stores, people. Seriously, my vacation "relief" or "fix" of western society involves me walking up and down every aisle just looking... I don't even have to buy, just enjoy looking. Seriously, your onions are huge. Apples, berries, avocado... oh my.