I’ve been home about three weeks now, and I still take in a sharp breath every time I walk into a grocery store. I can’t believe I have all of this food right at my fingertips! Blackberries! Cap’n Crunch! Real orange juice! Ravioli! Greek yogurt and Bloody Mary mix and ground coffee and so much more!!!
My first grocery store visit, I wandered around for two hours with my mouth open, completely dumbfounded. I actually cried when I got to the cereal aisle. I felt like dropping to my knees and belting out a “hallelujah!” to the heavens. And did you know that Kraft sells seventeen different kinds of shredded cheese? I still can’t get over it. Cheddar, sharp cheddar, low-fat cheddar, mozzarella, Monterey Jack, Mexican three-blend, Mexican four-blend… I actually counted them. And that’s just Kraft—there are also Kroger and store-bought brands and Horizon Organics and Glenview Farms and so many others that I can’t even list them all. Is all that cheese really necessary? I couldn’t even find one kind of shredded cheese in Lesotho. Any second thoughts on leaving my cheese grater in Africa have since been forgotten.
I get this odd feeling like I need to buy everything I can all at once and keep it safe at home in my cupboards. I think I’ve become a food hoarder. In Lesotho, I’d rarely get the chance to buy good cheese and canned chick peas, so I’d stock up when I could and save it for a special night. I still can’t get over the fact that the food here is not going to disappear—food, good food, is always going to be there.
My only wish is that all of the volunteers from Lesotho could come back together and go shopping in a grocery store. We’d either look like look like absolute maniacs, crying and screaming and throwing up our hands in the air, or like deer caught in the headlights, completely stunned into silence. Luckily, I am the deer in the headlights type.