After returning from a trip out of town with the family where I pretty much stayed in bed for the majority of the time, I decided to venture out to Trader Joe’s on my home turf of Seattle.
I forgot- or perhaps deliberately misremembered- what it’s like to insinuate myself into Trader Joe’s in the Seattle area. It’s just all around awful 😦
In Detroit, Trader Joe’s is a place where you can go if you want to get healthy food at reasonable prices. You can buy organic ingredients, and find interesting and exotic fare and pretend you are a yuppy, but do it on a ghetto budget. You will be smiled at and embraced by like-minded people who are proud of you for trying to make moves in the right direction, who will give you the benefit of the doubt that you probably want to buy the organic cage-free non-GMO vegetarian humanitarian-raised individually nurtured and coddled eggs, even though you are buying the cheaper more regular eggs… They treat you like you are in on the right side of whatever it is you should be on the right side of and it feels good to be there. People chat and hang out and share recipes and just generally vibe with each other in a cool positive way. It’s got all the nice aspects of a cafe, but for folks who also want great prices on produce and delicious dairy products.
Not so in Seattle.
In Seattle the agony starts in the parking lot. You maneuver into the tiny little place which is designed to let you know that you really shouldn’t be driving there unless you are in a Smart Car or perhaps a go-cart- or better yet, a bicycle. You feel like you have violated the moral code before you ever step foot in the store, and when you walk in, heaven help you if you have more than one child with you. Two children will earn you the harshest of glares, and more than that may cause actual physical violence to break out. Unlike the employees in every other Trader Joe’s everywhere, the workers here act like you have interrupted them in the middle of a colonoscopy and they are none too pleased about it. No matter what they are doing they seem ticked off that you are seeing them do it and irritated that you are in their store. You kind of want to stealthily buy whatever you need and then get out of there as quickly as possible before someone gets an attitude with you that you are taking too many of their yogurts or touching too many of their vitamins…
I’m trying hard to get back to doing the right thing food-wise. That means I really want to buy organic when it’s possible, and buy non-GMO whenever I can. But if Trader Joe’s is going to be such a nightmare it’s going to be a real struggle to walk this path. I have definitely drifted to the easy junky stuff here, but in truth when you live in a place like Seattle where it is so easy to make good buying choices, I really shouldn’t let myself get so sloppy. So, I guess I will see how hard I’m willing to work to do what I believe in. But it would be nice if Trader Joe’s would meet me halfway…