April 10, 2008

French Shopping

One more insight into daily life in this country... So, we've all seen shopping carts in stores...
The French stores have these carts as well.. But most people (me included now), tag along a modification of this cart in varied colors, designs, sizes but quintessentially the same...

These are very handy considering that most people here use the public transportation to get across... Not just that... even when the grocery is a few blocks away, carrying back heavy stuff like water or milk cans can be quite a pain. So instead, people tag these along on their shopping trips and stow away stuff while shopping into it and out for checkout and back in to carry home. It really is handy. At first it sort of felt like everyone was lugging a golf club cart or cricket gear but soon you get used to it and once you've realized its convenience, you know that every household in France probably has one/ two of these. Not just that... its more important coz these carts double up as laundry carts, and as carry-anything-heavy carts. It was of big help when we moved into our apartment last month just from a few blocks up... There was no point in getting a moving truck.

Besides another major motivation is that most stores in Paris at least charge you for a sturdy plastic bag, something of the order of 30 cents. thats not much but it does strike you as ridiculous, doesn't it? So after yesterday when I had paid my 3rd 30 cents of the week to lug back stuff home, I finally had the much-awaited clever idea of stashing away 1-2 of these plastic bags in the bag I carry everyday. Some other stores sell you real sturdy bags but at a higher price... And the fact of the matter is that one never remembers to carry along one of those bags especially on impromptu shopping trips when you most need it. Guess the shopping cart wasn't made without reason, huh? Makes me wonder why such a thing wouldn't flourish in a student locality in places like the US where students can't afford cars or don't want to take taxis for the measliest trips. I for one would've been really happy if this had been an option in the pre-SO-car-days when we had to take taxis from Kroger for every grocery trip... This would've definitely been the practical option. Business ideas, anyone? And if it does start appearing in the US, I claim royalty for having made the suggestion first!!


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