Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Grocery Shopping in Deutschland

It was 3:00 and Jon was home.

I was so bummed because I hadn't run to the grocery store yet and I didn't want to miss out on time with Jon.  Luckily he joined me and it was so wonderful, so normal, I loved it.

(Just a little side note I LOVE grocery shopping - Jon doesn't love it as much.
He is definitely a hunter - go out, find it, kill it, bring it home.
I'm a gatherer - I go out, I see what is in season then slowly search for the best before picking it and bringing it home.)

Let me tell you about this little outing we went on.

We didn't...
hop in our car and drive for five minutes to the BIG grocery store in our town.
oh no no

grab a grocery cart and make sure to sanitize the handle before we started shopping.

walk through a giant, brightly lit, warehouse wading through aisle after aisle of endless choices.
absolutely not

stand and flip through the latest gossip magazine while the checker pulls the groceries out of our cart and the bagger puts them into bags and then in a new cart.
you guessed it, no way Jose!

What we did was pack the kiddo in her awesome German Kinderwagen (stroller) grab Jon's backpacking backpack (when it's just me I use a big bright yellow school backpack) and walked about five blocks to our local grocery store.
Normally I just use the stroller as my grocery cart but since Jon was with me we paid the 1 euro deposit for the cart.

We walked  through the 4 small aisles seeing what they have this week.
every week, or rather day, it's different
From what I have noticed German's care WAY more about price than on brand.  
For example, I will try and fall in love with a spaghetti sauce and then 3 days later when I go back to restock our five shelves they won't have that sauce anymore and so I'll have to try a different kind.  
Let me get back on track.  
So we walk up and down the aisle and pick out the few things that we need/can carry, then go to check out.

There are two check out lanes and there are two people who work at the store.  
So when they need to restock, or clean up on aisle 9 (or rather the aisle with the eggs and milk - that aren't refrigerated) there is only one lane to check out.  
We wait in line unload our groceries from the cart and/or Kinderwagen onto the conveyor belt, check out and then as quickly as they can scan the items put it back in the cart so we don't back up the line.

Pay - only cash or debit card.
Then we take our cart over to the bagging area and bag up our groceries in the bag we brought with us.

Return the cart, get our euro back.

Then walk , a little more slowly than when we came, back home.

I loved it.

It was awesome.

Although life here in Germany is still unfamiliar it felt so normal, like grocery shopping always did when we were at home in the states.  I chatted away while Jon drove the cart.  We figured out what we wanted to eat for the next few days and restocked the necessities.  It was grocery shopping, the process and place were just very different.    



  1. You have described shopping VERY well! When I trudged thru King Soopers on Sat. with at least 6000 other shoppers with kids & carts and play cars pulling carts, looking at a billion choices--I thought of our shopping trips. One hour and $200 later with bags & bags to stock Dad & I up for a couple of weeks, I thought of how much nicer simple is.

  2. True but you don't know how nice a big selection is until you've been a month without your Jiff. :o)

  3. Oh, I LOVE it! :) Finding the normal in a life that will make everything else never feel normal again... and yet somehow, it becomes so. ;) It's a BEAUTIFUL process.

  4. It is beautiful but slow.

  5. I suppose so--I did see where Yatin found some PB! Yay!

  6. Yes - yeah, but not Jiff - boo!

  7. Sorry, me again commenting :) Don't you HATE how they don't actively restock out-of-stock items. It is unthinkable to do that back at home! Haha, just thought that was funny you noticed it too!

  8. YES!!!! I am so glad to hear that I'm not losing it and that the items really do go missing from shopping trip to shopping trip.

    Oh and by the way, your header on your blog is SOOOO cute!