23 April, 2008


Category: DC,Food,Shopping — Moose @ 10:05 pm

I zipped out to Harris Teeter over at Pentagay City this evening to do some much delayed, much needed grocery shopping. Decided that I really didn’t need to use the local Safeway (which has a deservedly awful reputation, as do most of the Safeways in DC), that I had a car, and could choose to go somewhere nicer, so I did. I hadn’t been in this particular grocery store before, and I have to say, it was an eye-opening experience. The produce was nice, there was plenty of it. The aisles were wide enough to walk down without hitting people (and there were no displays stuck in the middle of them around which one would have to navigate). And people were polite – I heard lots of “please” and “excuse me” and even the young person who almost backed into me while on his cell phone had the good social graces to look slightly embarrassed and stutter out “my bad, my bad” when he saw me. Oh, and they had wine and beer in the store, so no need to run to a different one to pick up some of that, too. It was altogether an incredibly pleasant experience.

I realized on the drive home that I was feeling like an abuse victim who had suddenly realized the world didn’t have to be as bad as it had been, that there were better people out there with whom I could associate. It was at once an astonishing and an awful revelation. And a telling one, that living in DC has made my customer service expectations sink to such a low level that minor things like polite phrases and helpful employees make a mere shopping trip feel like a life-altering event.

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