A Refresher Course in Simplicity

Do you stock up on things like paper towels? How does this affect your usage?

I know if we have an 8-pack of paper towels or a 100 paper plates stacked, I tend to use more of these things.

I’m excited for my husband to experience the simplicity of the developing world. Fewer choices of peanut butter, ketchup, and cereal. Fewer brands, fewer advertisements, fewer television and radio stations… Greater simplicity. It clears the mind not to have choices.

I remember the culture shock I experienced in the grocery store when I came back from a year in Nicaragua. The plethora of peanut butters, condiments, and cereals floored me. It was as if I’d never seen so many.

Now I shop, twice in one week, at a phenomenon called Fairway. A new store opened in Pelham Manor, NY. The first time I went, I was astounded, and rightly so. A giant sign in the store proclaims this to be the “largest collection of food in Westchester County.” I was so impressed, bedazzled, and exhausted by its sheer size, I thought surely it’s as big as Home Depot. So, I looked it up. Home Depot of New Rochelle is 118,000 square feet, and Fairway of Pelham Manor is 75,000 square feet.

For me, El Salvador will be refresher course. For my husband, it may feel like camping, like deprivation, or like heaven, who knows? Not having hot water and having to throw all toilet tissue into a wastebasket is the norm in most parts of Central America outside the big cities. The quality of the food may disappoint, though I’ve only heard good things about El Salvador in the cuisine department. (The food in Nica, no offense to my friends, is terrible almost everywhere, but you come to love it because it’s shared amiably in a communal setting.) It may come as a surprise that they don’t refrigerate their eggs or date their yogurt. At least they didn’t 10 years ago, and why would you refrigerate an egg, anyway?

A manager at the store has a sense of humor and the signage is funny.

"These machines cost a fortune," you crunchy bastards.

About MommyTheorist

Editor, writer, photographer, and new mom
This entry was posted in Family, Health, Marriage, Psychology, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to A Refresher Course in Simplicity

  1. Lee Kottner says:

    And yet, grocery stores all over the midwest look like this, and did long before Walmart, Costco, et al. It’s only the overhead in New York that keeps grocery stores a reasonable size. It’s also the privilege of owning a car that lets you shop once a week, instead of every day as I’ve learned to do. Great post!

  2. oliarights says:

    I love Simplicity. We go to the food Coop in Park Slope. It cuts all the choices to organic and not genetically modified products. The space is small so it can only have one or two of each thing. I love it!

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