- on the picture is Jaantje who came to visit me from Belgium.
Cheap grocery shopping in New York – impossible. First. But then someone told me about this supermarket with decent prices, organic and diverse products, vegan, vegetarian, gluten free, almond milk, hipster stuff: Trader Joe’s.
Seeking for a shopping experience without tears in my eyes at the cashier, when the prices I saw before actually become reality and even more since tax is added afterwards, I thought I gotta go there- immediately!
So I went and had the most craziest shopping experience ever. I would have never thought by the way, that I would ever write a blogpost about grocery shopping. Sorry when it’s super boring but I need this to be written down to get over it.
For a better understanding, you must know that I am used to calm supermarkets where you listen to ‘The girl from Ipanema’ and find try-out stands on every corner. With big shopping buggies, broad hallways in huge malls.
I entered the sacred halls of ‘Trader Joe’s Supermarket’ and ran into a girl standing there with a sign in her hand:
The queue for the cashier started at the entrance!!!
There were even two and both made their way through the whole store which meant you would always have to make your way through people when you wanted to pick something out of the shelf.
Ok I was fine, different countries, different…blabla.
So I took my stuff, excusing the whole time for pushing people away. Being stressed because the queue seemed to be even longer, when I understood that most of the people went shopping while they are in the queue.
Why does no one explain that to me before?
So I would join the queue and then leave my stuff and run around the corner to get something and hope my buggie will still be there when I return.
Check out this link for 18 incredible things you didn’t know about Trader Joe’s.
I found this nice lady, she was always pushing my buggie when I was somewhere else.
By the way, I have to say that people where so patient. I have this German ‘Ungeduld’ – impatience – still in me. Even though I do a lot of Yoga and really try to be very Zen and Ying and Yang but in an extreme situation the Ungeduld comes through.
The products are amazing, they firstly have everything, secondly for a ‘normal’ price (not grapes for 8$ like the day before…uff), most of it is organic and with less artificial and additional ingredients (how do they do that?!) and the products look so pretty, they have very nice wrappings.
The loudspeaker voice spoke in a funny way with the employees, they were helping people and spreading a nice atmosphere and at the cashier the guy was so nice and calm, all my German Ungeduld went away.
It is as if a whole primary school would meet up in a supermarket and the teacher tries to organise everything.
On the cashier there was this guy on a ladder (yes) looking where the next free cashier was and telling you your number. #bestjobever
I bought way too much and didn’t really think of the fact, that I was at Union Square (huge metro station) and would have to make my way home.
With four bags I entered the subway. Rush hour.
Rush hour means, rush or die. Literally. If you stand somewhere you will be pushed away (maybe even in front of the next train) so don’t stand still. Only tourists do that.
There was this jazz band and 15 meter further these guys that play electronic music mixed with a trompete and I was standing there in the tunnels, people running around. This music. These fully loaded bags. And I had to laugh, because it was such a stupid situation.
The metro comes every 3 minutes and still people run and push to get in the one which is standing there. I was in the metro, my face pressed on the window since the guy next to me was very big and on the next stop a guy with a golf buggie entered. Even the guy dressed as a woman with a flamingo on his hat had to laugh. This made my day. This city is just insane…
I looked like this (left picture, sorry for the duckface but that was the only one I did, originated for private purposes) when I ran around in Trader Joe’s to take the pictures, cause during my first visit I couldn’t, I was too overwhelmed. I also was a bit tipsy that day cause the idea of taking pictures (which I forgot during my first visit in the store) happened to pop into my head on my way home from Santacon – a street festival where everyone gets dressed like santa clause or a slutty elf. And actually that was the perfect time for shopping there! Super empty cause everyone outside was busy chasing sexy Rudolph and I was full of confidence and red wine and thought my hat looked fancy and I should wear it everyday.