I’m not a shopper. I’m especially not a big-store shopper. It’s not so much that I consciously avoid the giant department stores, I just don’t like lugging the booty home with me when there are neighborhood stores I would walk past on my way. I’ve been in a couple of the big department stores around here, but always as a spectator. Today, it was time. I needed a few things that the local stores don’t seem to carry (emphasis on ‘seem’), and I’ve lived in my apartment long enough that it’s time I went out and got those little things that make a house a home. A year and a half is long enough without a can opener. If I waited any longer people might accuse me of procrastinating.
I hadn’t realized it until I saw a billboard, but one metro stop away from me is one of the giant department stores. It is in the direction away from the city, and in my time here I had never gone past my stop. So on the one hand all I did was hop on the metro to go shopping at a giant store. On the other hand I went to a new place to shop at a store I’d never been to before.
It was entirely like every other giant department store on the planet, with just a couple of exceptions. The goods were arranged with czech sensibilites, matching the way smaller stores categorize themselves. For instance, every shopping district in Prague has a store that sells electric things. If you want something that runs off electricity, for whatever purpose, you go to the electric thing store. Perfectly sensible. I found my beard trimmer between the digital cameras and the microwave ovens. Because it’s electric. Once I walked through the store once, I had no trouble finding anything I needed.
I now have knives that cut, a nice stainless-steel frying pan, a can opener, and a hair trimmer (not one of those pathetic pieces of junk they sell as beard trimmers). Five more years and I’ll be moved in!