I haven’t been in a grocery since my breakdown back in March. Between the stress of that trip, and my ‘rule-follower’ personality, I have been the model ‘stay at 体彩app官方网站’ citizen.
Governor Cuomo would be so proud.
But, this week, I ventured out. We were low on meat and other items unavailable through the various pick-up services in the area. Plus, some sort of decent chocolate needed to find its way into this house to represent on Easter.
Plexiglass shields, tape on the floor: How grocery shopping has changed
I suited up: old clothes that would go in the machine as soon as I got 体彩app官方网站, gloves and my husband’s respirator mask (the only mask in our house unless I wanted to sport Doc McStuffins’ PPE from the girls’ play clothes stash). I left my contact lenses at 体彩app官方网站 and sported eyeglasses after a reader pointed out glasses (sort of) act as eye protectors. I also wore a baseball cap so I wouldn’t be tempted to touch/play with my hair.
Our one remaining, half-full container of Clorox wipes was tucked in the car and I threw my spray bottle in for good measure. I also brought my own bags, unsure of where we were with the (unfortunately timed) New York state single-use bag ban right now.
I called BJ’s Wholesale Club and Fresh Market the day before to 1. ask how busy they each are when they open (no grocery item is worth navigating crowds) and 2. Confirm their public hours (more on a snafu with that below).
What's the connection between Albany and all the toilet paper we've been hoarding?
My shopping list was on paper, rather than the ‘notes’ feature on the phone. I wore my Apple Watch so I’d see if work emailed or if my husband was texting to say all hell was breaking loose at 体彩app官方网站 while he took conference calls and the girls did 体彩app官方网站 work but planned to leave my phone — untouched — in the car.
I felt prepared for battle, or grocery shopping in the age of COVID-19.
A few observations from when I ventured into a grocery store for the first time in 3-plus weeks.
• Toilet paper is back in stock. Readers have talked about finding it at Target, Walmart, ShopRite and others and I saw it at BJ’s where just about every customer had a package (limit one) in their cart.
• Rice — white and brown — is still hard to score.
• Most people wore masks, but several repeatedly removed them to talk to cashiers, counter people, etc. I wanted to yell ‘stop touching your damn face!’
• People respected the distance rules — hardcore — stepping back so others could pass and not crowding one another in the aisles (which can be hard to do in a store as tight as Fresh Market).
• A good 30 percent of customers at Fresh Market at 8 a.m. were my age. Despite my kindergartner estimating I am 78, that is not true. And we are not seniors. Eight to 9 a.m. Monday – Friday is senior time. Me and several others incorrectly thought the senior hours were only on Mondays. We got called out by the older customers. We deserved the scolding.
• Not one little dog in a grocery cart or tucked under a shopper’s arm — a rarity for Fresh Market.
• Couples shopped together, but not to split-up the list. Why, why, why expose both of you to the outside world?
• The check-out line at BJ’s ran halfway down the club fewer than 15 minutes after they opened.
• A customer in BJ’s yelled ‘dude, there’s a lady here wearing a *gas mask*’ and took my photo. I smiled — didn’t want my eyes and cheeks to look angry when I end up a meme in his text exchange with friends. I then yelled through my mask that it was called a respirator. Accuracy, folks. It matters.