Friday, June 20, 2014

Grocery Store Frustration--Part 2

Not satisfied with one frustrating trip to the grocery store this week, I opted for more fun last evening when Chris had a cooking emergency and needed one onion, two lemons, and quinoa

Now some may ask, what is quinoa? Well, it is a grain, but apparently it is more closely related to spinach and tumbleweeds than wheat and rye. That sounds appetizing.  Actually, I do enjoy it and she makes an incredible salad form it.

But armed with the idea that it was a grain I figured, how hard could it be to find a grain that I can't even spell in the store? Three items should take five minutes or less? Right?

Not so fast!

I went to my neighborhood Green Valley Marketplace for this quick event. The time was late, almost 7:30 pm as I sojourned out. 

I quickly found the lemons and the onion--I knew where they were, although they have strategically placed the onions out of sight and I felt  moment of panic as I rounded the last row in the produce section to find the onion display. And then the hunt began. Another safari through the savannah known as another illogically laid out grocery store.

I looked for the quinoa in the grain section near the rice and other grain type products. No luck. So I had the brilliant idea to check out the pasta aisle--because there seemed to be some small glimmer of similarity. Nope, not there either. 

I looked through the grain aisle again--slowly and deliberately hoping for a miracle of revelation. No miracle. Back to the pasta. Nope. I looked down a few other assorted aisles--but didn't find it in the condiments nor the olive section. I gave olives a shot since they seem to be the catchall for everything else.

Panic! This simple, focused expedition to the grocery store was becoming another frustrating event. Arghh!

I went to the counter for help. The response scared me. Quinoa? What is that? I began to fear that I was going to have to drive five miles to the Giant where I was sure to find this grain. But, after explaining that is was a grain-like substance the manager seemed to understand and took me to the sugar aisle. I was thinking, she is clueless--but no--there, sandwiched between the sugar and the flour was a small section devoted to lesser known grains whose names I did not even begin to recognize and after searching this section we found one small row of quinoa! I was saved!

I accepted the bag from her hand, called home to confirm the price and substance and made my way to the checkout, happy to have been successful in my quest, but frustrated again by the illogical shelf management system.

Another happy ending suitable for the movies!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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