January 4, 2013

Illiterate shopping

How do I go shopping when I can’t read anything on the package of the item I’m about to buy? Let me share a short story that sums up my experiences in the store.

So our aiyi needed some cooking wine to make our lunch and because I was outside already, I was volunteered to go to the store to buy it.

Armed with the brand name “Wang zhi he” and the description that it looked something like apple cider vinegar and the price of 4 RMB, I ventured into the local store to find what she needed. I found it, but there were two kinds so I immediately called home.

Me: “Which one does she want: the one that says ‘Te zhi’ or one that says nothing I can read?”
M’Lynn: “What do they look like?”
Me: “They both have a yellow label. One has pinyin and the other has large Chinese calligraphy characters on it.”
Her: “That one. What’s the price?”
Me: “4.5 RMB”
Her: “That’s it.”

That’s it. That’s exactly how we go about buying things in the store. It’s all about the label, the color, and the location. We do the same thing with everything, even the pork roast for Christmas dinner. M’Lynn sent me this text message:

“Buy a chunk of meat on the bottom right hand side of the pork display case.” I just hoped they didn’t decide to rearrange the meat that day.

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