August 01, 2010

Scenes From A Grocery Store

In preparation for friends coming to visit tomorrow, Nathan and I set out by bus to do some grocery shopping. In the last two weeks I have been to 6 different stores and one wet market (farmer's market) in an attempt to figure out where my store of choice was going to be. After much exploring and more shopping than I would have done in 2 months back in Houston, I have found my favorites. We discovered the Singapore version of Wal Mart in a store called Carrefour located, like many other grocery stores, in the bottom floor of a local mall. It is both large and relatively inexpensive so I am forcing myself to go there on a regular basis. We think it's really fun that it's a 2-story store with this fun walkway to take you between the two levels.

Since we are now experienced shoppers, we went with our $1 in hand prepared to "rent" our cart.

The very first thing you will notice when walking into Carrefour is the smell. Nathan gagged his way through his first experience in this store because it honestly smells like you have walked into a storehouse for rotting fruit. I now know to expect this so it's funny to see novice Carrefour shoppers walking around with noses wrinkled, shirts covering mouth and nose opting for the scent of their own self over that of the store. It's truly one of the worst smells ever. The culprit? A fruit named Dorian. It smells so bad that there's a saying that Dorian "tastes like heaven, but smells like hell". It's enough to make you want to have an altar call right in the middle of the store. It is actually illegal to buy Dorian and take it on any form of public transportation because of the smell.

With my camera in hand, determined to grab a picture of this foul smelling fruit, we went to the large display of Dorian in the center of the store. I snapped a picture of the guy in charge of cutting up the fruit and then he offered us a complimentary piece. In a matter of seconds, Nathan and I had an audience of about 20 Asian shoppers anxious for the floor show of watching the poor Americans suffer through their first Dorian experience. Nathan was the first to take a small bite. There was a full head to toe shudder that followed that bite. It was then my turn, all the while being cheered on by a growing crowd. Never one to want to disappoint a crowd, I picked up the fruit with the look and texture of raw chicken skin, took a deep breath and bit into it. It was truly one of the most horrendous things I have ever tasted. I'm sure the look on my face said it all as there was an eruption of laughter from the crowd before they began to disperse. I was fighting the urge to vomit right there while graciously telling the man that although we appreciated his generosity, we would not be taking any home with us.

I am convinced that the Dorian display is the key to fast weight loss. The smell is so intense and so terrible that there is no extra lingering in the cookie aisle or walking back and forth in front of the bakery deciding whether that 5 minutes of excercise yesterday merits buying a bakery cake. pretty much take a deep breath, run into the store and get what you absolutely need and leave as soon as you can. If only there was a Scratch 'n Sniff option for this blog.......

We decided to pass on the $45 bag of frozen escargot. We did not, however, pass on this next aisle where you could hear the angels sing. Well, at least Texas angels......

I have been very surprised to find that you buy eggs on an aisle much like you would buy a can of tuna or a jar of olives. No refrigeration needed. I have a love/hate relationship with eggs ever since that time in college when I cracked open an egg to find blood inside. To say that I was scarred is a gross understatement. I don't know if I thought refrigeration is what prevented the egg from turning into a chicken.....I am not sure to this day how that happens, nor do I want to know. All I know is that there was something very disturbing about buying eggs that were sitting out there all exposed and warm. I nervously purchased a dozen and was happy to find not a feather nor a beak in the entire bunch.

Nathan and I completed our shopping in record time and joined the 362 other shoppers in incredibly long lines to check out before going outside the mall to line up once again for a taxi. I purchased just over a half full cart of groceries for $150 today and consider that a raging success. In this house, that should last about 3 days.

We are looking forward to having the Linebargers here for the next several days and having the chance to be Singapore tourists! I am going to have to consciously make an effort to not smother my poor friend in my excitetment at having her here.

Hmmmm......I wonder if they've ever had Dorian? Now that could be a lot of fun!


  1. Have a blast! Glad you are finding your footing:) Love and prayer!

  2. I am SO excited for you and for Christie. I highly suggest that you NOT encourage her to taste the dorian stuff. I am smiling LOTS just thinking of all of you being together...and well, maybe a little jealous. She certainly understands what it is like to be in a foreign nations...ask her about the "" in Japan. One of her early experiences. Thank you for being so excited about our kids coming to see you. You are a blessing to them...and to us. We continue to pray for you to get settled and enjoy all God has for you in that place. Have loved reading about your adventures. Please keep sharing.

  3. My brother-in-law asked me if I tasted the fruit in Cambodia that smelled like feet. I think he meant dorian. :)

    Love this post! So excited to hear more and more about life in Singapore!

    And I LOVED your comment on my blog. Our house is only 1400 sq. ft. and I thought we were pretty clutter-free until I started digging. HA! Long way to go, but yes, SO FREEING!

  4. YOU travel across countries, buy a loft, entertain houe guests, hang @ the American club
    an Find time to Change the lay-out of YOUR blog!
    What are you Super-friend?
    I mISS YOU!-I have been missing out because the blog is great-& the pictures r Just what i needed for a Pick-me UP!
    Love, Ur biggest fan & Friend for life in Cypress

  5. tried to JOIN but not approved?
    what profile? do I select....
    Love, profile-reject in cypress



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