Tuesday, June 23, 2009


My financial adviser (also a long time friend) recently urged me to join and shop for groceries as well as big items at one of the big box wholesale places. I intend to do this, but somehow I don't see myself shopping for groceries there while I'm in Minnesota.

The other day I drove to the big box, thinking I'd stop in and join and look around. I was immediately put off by the line of cars in the parking aisles waiting for parking spaces. Long lines and crowds of shoppers do not excite me. Of course, in our present economic circumstances I should probably be saving pennies whenever I can. I think, however, this meager diet I'm on is saving a lot on groceries right now, giving me a good excuse to put off the wholesale warehouse shopping adventure.

Instead I went to my favorite Byerly's (Golden Valley), where I bought my one or two necessaries and checked out, visiting and exchanging smiles with my friends there. I know most of the staff by name. They are genuinely friendly (as opposed to robotically programmed friendly) and have been welcoming me for upwards of 25 years.

My mother used to tell perfect strangers with whom she had struck up a conversation that she was from a small town and always expected to know the people she saw on the street. So, of course, she looked them in the eye and talked to them. I'm not as friendly as my mother, but a little of her has rubbed off on me, and that is good.

So when I shop for groceries, I go to Byerly's. I may pay a few cents more for my groceries there, but I don't see my life being fully happy without my chance to visit with Bob or Linda or Barb or Joni or Shawna or Michel or Peggy or Kathleen or Sandra or James - or many of the others.

Disclaimer: This is not intended to be an advertisement for Lunds/Byerly's.

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