Living in Greece, Travel

Grocery Shopping in Pikermi

Part of the excitement of traveling is that daily tasks become opportunities for bravery.  I slept through the school’s breakfast, so I walked to Cafe Veneti for coffee.  Just saying, “espresso americano,” staring blankly at the cashier when she asked me something, then assuring her I had euros when she changed the bill to dollars, took a lot out of me.  But I did it!  I get to feel proud of myself for ordering coffee – what a world.  Next door was a medium sized grocery store (apparently they get bigger the further you walk from the school).

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View courtesy of Google Maps

Although a grocery store is a grocery store is a grocery store, there were some differences between shopping in Pikermi and running to Kroger in the United States.  

The biggest difference is that I walked there!  It’s just a block away, but I had to think about the amount of things I would buy.  Without a car to fill with bags, I walked through the store with a basket on my arm.  I figured whatever I could carry inside the store, I could carry back to the school.

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Like I said, there’s not a lot of variety between grocery stores in the world. Like most, this one had aisles of packaged food products, and a few full of household goods toward the back of the store.  And like most grocery stores, when you walk in, you are immediately confronted with colorful produce!

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I tend to live off of avocados and eggs, so when I saw that avocados were 2,85 €, I was horrified.  I bought one anyway, and happily discovered that the price advertised is per pound…or gram, or something.  According to my receipt, my one avocado was ,97 €, which is much better.

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It is a little disorienting trying to shop when everything is labeled in another language.  Luckily, most foods have pictures on their packages.  Even with that, there were some things I couldn’t figure out.  Maybe I’ll buy some mystery foods another week.

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In the end, I bought some fruit, soy milk, coffee, cereal, and a variety of plastic dishes for a total of 41,34 €.  I have no idea if that’s a good deal or not, but this first week I’ll probably have to overshoot my budget just to fill in gaps of things I need.

Or maybe I’ll just go on a spending spree, because it is so much fun to go shopping in another country!  Once again, a gift of traveling:  mundane tasks become exciting.

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