Sunday, September 23, 2012

Andie's Big Adventure: Errand Running in Newfoundland

This is not the front door. It's the dungeon. Now you KNOW you want to come visit!
So there we were, and here we are. 8 North Point Road, Portugal Cove-St. Philip's Newfoundland. Renting John and Coleen's wonderful little cottage on the water. The Sunday after our arrival on Saturday, we didn't stay to enjoy the view very long. We had to get out and provision up.

A lot of our friends had a little bit of a misconception about where we were going to be. I got lots of questions like "You're going to go crazy being so isolated! Where on earth will you shop?? What kind of food will you be able to get?!"

I think this is what they pictured.


Let me introduce you to the St. John's Costco.

And it was about this crowded.

Honestly, I've never seen so many people at a Costco in my life. Getting around in there was like trying to get to the stage of a Stones concert in 1978.

We managed to get what we needed and stood in line for half an hour to check out. We had a LOT of stuff. Our US Costco card worked just fine, but guess what didn't? Right. Our US debit card. And this is how you make writing about a trip to Costco interesting. Introduce some stress and humiliation.

We had just assumed our debit card would be fine since we'd already been using it all around town. But you know, Costco has that weird thing where they take only debit cards, cash or AmEx. The supervisor was summoned. Canadians in line behind the stupid crass Americans (we had on matching Hawaiian shirts) looked like they wanted to cut us. I don't blame them. The supervisor suggested we try the ATM and use cash. The Costco ATM didn't like us any better than the cash register did. I think it even called Phillip a hoser. So the Costco people gathered all our stuff up and set it aside. The employees were incredibly nice to us. The supervisor said maybe they could take a check, so we left to go back to the house and get the checkbook. On the way there, she called and said no, the manager said they couldn't take a check (I wasn't surprised), but there was a bank branch open where we could probably get cash. We came home, got the information on the bank, and drove over. They weren't open, as it turned out. Holiday weekend. So much for Mom saying I had to work Monday because Candians don't have Labor day. But the ATM worked just fine with our card, thank goodness. Cash in hand, we returned to the scene of embarrassment and degradation and claimed our purchases. They had to re-check us out, and were going to break us in line and I said oh HELL no. We'd wait like everyone else. I didn't want to get shanked by a mob one day after getting here.

After that three-hour ordeal, we headed out in search of a desk. Staples. Next, rounding out of the kitchen supplies. Bed, Bath and Beyotch. In the same area, they have a Best Buy and the Wal-Marks. Plenty of civilization. Well, maybe not the Wal Marks.  But I don't think we'll starve or be deprived of stuff while we're here. We also had to swing into a sports shop and let Pootie get some workout clothes because homeboy left those in Wilmington. Finally dragged ourselves and a truckload of stuff in the door at 5:00.

But you know, when this is what greets you, it's hard to stay grumpy for long.

For our first REAL night in our new borrowed home (thanks again Coleen and John!) after enduring a fairly stressful day, I needed a little comfort of home. And I don't mean Wilmington, because really fresh shrimp are scarce here right now, and I forgot grits. I mean childhood comfort. It's beautiful here, but The Costco Incident on top of the trip and leaving home discombobulated me a bit. I made my childhood favorite. Chicken Paprika. It's orange, like Cheetos, so that means it's good. I've blogged it here before, and to reward you for being such a loyal reader and getting all the way to the end of a blog talking about shopping for groceries at Costco, here is the recipe in .pdf format.

Aloha, peoples! Stay tuned for more scenery and precious little cooking right here!

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