Before moving to New York, waiting in line at the supermarket, or any store for that matter, never seemed like a big deal. The worst line might have 3-4 people in front of me, but I never had to wait more than 5 minutes to get to the cash register.
Now that I have been living here for over five and a half years, waiting in line is basically part of New York life, whether it’s for a restaurant (with or without a reservation, sadly), groceries, or even at freaking Rite Aid just to buy M&Ms for Chris. I’ve actually been at the Rite Aid right around the corner from my apartment on a Saturday, where I was disgusted to see a single-file line of about eight people. All Trader Joe’s locations in Manhattan are notorious for their lines that zig-zag throughout their store (and requires employees to follow the ends of those lines carrying large, bright red “End of Line” signs) and I guess that shouldn’t be surprising since it’s the most affordable place to buy good-quality groceries and produce in this crowded and expensive metropolis.
I went down to the Trader Joe’s during a break midday to drop off baked chocolate pastries I made for one of my best friends who works there, and I thought, hmm, maybe since it’s snowing and slushy outside, there won’t be a line there, and I can get away with grabbing a few things and not dealing with a huge crowd. Wrong. The line went all the way to the back of the store. Apparently, these New Yorkers all had the same idea I did.
Actually, the best time to go grocery shopping really would have been during the Super Bowl last night as Chris suggested. Oh well. Maybe next year.