Saturday, April 15, 2017

Saturday April 15 - Note to self - Don't shop for groceries on Saturdays in France

Especially if the Saturday is the day before Easter.

Emily and Ben left early this morning, we've changed the sheets and cleaned the bathrooms. We've figured out the washer/dryer and are in the slow process of washing our clothes and the sheets and towels from our first guests. This is one machine that washes and then beeps loudly for you to enter the drying program you'd like to use. We also have a clothes rack set up in our bedroom since it's threatening rain today. I expect laundry to be an ongoing task for the rest of the day.
Drying rack in our bedroom fireplace. Oh, the depths we've sunk to....

And we need a few groceries. While the bakery will be open tomorrow morning, nothing else will. And nothing is open Easter Monday, either. Dave, Janis and I trek off to Mûrs-Erigné, about 8 km  (5 miles) from here. The parking lot is packed, the cart stalls are empty, and hoards of people are chaotically moving about the store in no logical order. We manage to find the last cart in the stall. In France, the carts lock one into the other and you put a Euro coin into a slot to release the cart from the one in front of it. (When you return the cart, you push the chain and lock mechanism from the cart in front into yours and it releases your coin. Keeping a Euro coin in the car at all times is standard operating procedure here.)

The Hyper U (pronounced Heeper oo - like in spoon) grocery store is in a shopping plaza called Rive Sud (South River). You can buy anything from TVs to lettuce, including clothes, dishes, cookware, plumbing and electrical supplies as well as long aisles of food options.

Looking one way down the grocery store - aisles on right - this is taken about half way along the width of the store

Other than trying to decipher labels, the important thing to remember is that all produce must be weighed in the produce area on a special scale that allows you to enter the item type (luckily there are often pictures to choose from) and receive a printed label with weight and price.
Janis looking for where the peppers are. Notice the lovely radishes.
In this Hyper U, the produce area is huge and there is an employee sitting at a weighing station with 3 scales. This is much faster as this person punches in something on the scale and the label prints.
The lady who weighs your produce for you. Note the crowd - every aisle was like this.
The checkout works as it does in the US, except that you provide your own bags and you pack your own groceries. 
Checking out

Dave and Janis packing groceries
Now home to finish writing about the cool things we've done the  past couple of days while we await the arrival of Christie and Alex.  Oh, and do the laundry and maybe go to a wine open house.....


  1. Yes, I remember shopping in Europe and having to include a bag at checkout. I'm afraid us US shoppers are too used to having our market purchases bagged and ready for carry out.

  2. It's fun to see the pics of the big's busy as heck in our stores today as well. Thanks for sharing and Happy Easter!