Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Could It Be Love?

Dear TJ's,

I've always been skeptical of you.  You seemed the flight of a school girl's snack time fancy, not a place for true (albeit ameutur) cooks.  But time and time again you were brought up in conversations.  Friends told me to take you out for a spin.  They told me that if I didn't like you then I never had to see you again.  Oh TJ's what a stubborn girl I was!

"When the 'Wish Big Win Big' game is up," I told myself, "I'll give TJ's a try."  The jig is up and today was your day to shine.  I was distracted the whole way to you, TJ's.  I had just blown a fuse and didn't quite know it yet and was feeling quite childish for asking about it.  It was a common walk, but a somewhat nervous one too.

Arriving at your doorstep, I was unsure how to proceed.  Why was I being immediately thrown into the fruits and veggies?  I longed for the familiarity I'd had with my Jewel before.  I wandered, a bit disoriented through the produce aisle.  Grapefruit, yes.  And something to replace mushrooms in a meat pie.  Cauliflower, okay.  And English Muffins.  Or British Muffins, if you say so.  Why must we rush into these things though?  I turn the corner to finally meet my dairy section with a sigh of relief.  Cheese and milk, but where is my Oberweis?  This made me a sad chicken, but I pressed on through the frustration.

Now, meats always give me pause, so I can't entirely blame you TJ's, but I was again dismayed at the choices. Where was the plain chuck steak I needed?  Or a smaller package for those of us not feeding an entire village? For that matter, where was the deli counter?  Choosing a too-large package of beef cubes, I turned away towards the baking section, another moment of confusion.  Where was my powered sugar?  "Not today," One of your crew told me.

After all this frustration and madness (if $3 vanilla beans aren't madness I don't know what is), I made my way to the checkout.  Another crew member cheerfully helped me check out my groceries.  He even packed the bag for me while I swiped my card for a total of $36.20.  I'm sorry, what was that amount?  And then with my cashback added?

The whole walk home I kept staring at my cart.  $36.20!?!?!?!?!?!?  How is this possible.  I must not have bought as much food.  There's no way this is the price tag for the same amount of groceries I normally buy for a week.  I usually pay twice that.  It's because I didn't buy that much meat this week, isn't it?  That must be it.  Because I can't think of another explanation.  I nearly missed my walk signal because I was wracking my brain for another report.

Now, having come home safe, and checked the recipt again, I can think of none.  I can only determine that I must try again.  Double check to make sure.  Parts of me still don't believe it, but something in my soul is wanting to ask...

Trader Joe's will you be my Valentine?

Skeptically Yours,

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