How to Grocery Shop Like a Local

How to Grocery Shop Like a Local
Jennaye Derge - 08/29/2019

I  don't like to use the phrase "there are two types of people in this world" because there are many types of people in this world. There's a full range of unique humans that I've been taught to love and embrace and Ill always support everyone's choices in life. Except when it comes to the grocery store, and then there are two types of people in this world; those who love the grocery store, and then everyone else.

I fall in the latter category; I hate the grocery store and on top of that I don't really understand people who like it. crinkle my eyebrows, cock my head to the right and sputter out a "but..why?" when anyone has anything positive to say about the place where fruits and vegetables go to die.

Yes, It's hard for me to understand anyone who gets excited to walk through a fluorescent-lit maze of screaming children, slow moving turtle-men, and angry business ladies who also happen to be standing in front of the toothpaste I want.

And It's difficult to find pleasure in perusing the on-sale produce display, or to look at the hundreds of pasta options when a wake of 15 mouth-breathing vultures suddenly crowd around me and reach for the same box of strawberries I want. Or, the lurking mouth-breathers that stand way too close while I'm trying to make my pasta sauce decision.

No, this is never fun for me and never, ever, have I ever turned to any of those mouth breathing vultures and thought, wow, I really love it here!!

But, apparently, and I've slowly learned, that there are those people in the world who really do love it there. Love it when the self-scanner screams out, at its highest volume, what products they are buying and how much they cost or being faced with a choice of 20 different toilet paper brands. Yes, the grocery store lovers exist. They are the ones who walk through those front doors with a smile on their face. They are the ones that stand in the frozen food aisle feeling, not cold, but happiness.

You can spot a grocery store lover because they will be walking slowly up and down every single aisle as if they are explorers in the rain forest on an epic search for the elusive unicorn monkey. They ooh and aww at the yellow two-for-five-dollar sales tags and they stare at ingredients on cereal boxes like they're Sherlock Holmes and that box of Coco Puffs is the clues. They have The Food Network recipes glowing on their phones and a Starbucks cup sitting at convenience in their carts. They're rare, but they exist and never understand them.

Sometimes I wish I was one of these people; I really do. l wish I could plan out a meal instead of letting my cupboards go bare and then being forced to make a charcuterieesque dinner that consists of a hodgepodge of foods I have left over just to avoid the store one more day.

But instead, I will go grocery shopping when it's dire and convenient. When I do, 1 know exactly what I need and where those things are. I will avoid certain busy times of the day and eye contact with people I know so to not get stuck in a conversation that will prolong my time.

I'm Cinderella and the grocery store is midnight.

My mission is to get in and get out as fast as I can, because there are two types of people in this world; the ones who get to eat an elegant meal tonight, and then me.


Realize that no matter how much you wish it weren't true, you need food and if you hate grocery stores, you'll have to farm your own.

Get a loan from First Southwest Bank or Priority Financial Partners for land and find some property with The Wells Group or Durango Land and Homes.

Realize you can't farm with just a shovel, and a good attitude. Get some better tools and supplies:

Target Rental, Southwest Appliance, Kroegers Ave Hardware, StoneAge Inc. Duranglers Flies & Supplies to fish your own fish and Sunnyside Farms to process your meat.

Find out you have no idea what you're doing and ask for a little help:

The Garden Project of Southwest Colorado, Fort Lewis College Environmental Center

Food systems are hard, there is so much to it. Let other people do the work for you: Table to Farms Compost, Sunnyside Farms Market.

Going to the market is sort of like farming for yourself, right?

Durango Farmers Market, The Smiley Market, Animas City Night Bazaar

Realize you can't make everything and maybe you need some laundry detergent. Don't worry, there are better options:

PJ's Gourmet, Nature's Oasis, Durango Natural Foods Co-op, We-Fill

Or, Screw it all and go out to eat for every meal at all your favorite local restaurants instead.