On the edge of the inner city community adjacent to my community stands an Audi’s, a cut-rate super-market run by a German company. While I do not shop at Audis’ exclusively, I do shop there about once every six weeks for European products that otherwise can be found only at high–end boutique stores and for common but good quality non-perishables that church goers use to help fill the shelves of the local food pantry.
When I pulled into the parking lot early last Friday morning, I was surprised to see so many cars in the parking lot. The first big holiday of the season was still several weeks away. So, I was curious as to why so many shoppers were there. Then I realized that this was the first Friday after any disability or family aide checks arrived.
Although I sincerely concentrated on what I needed to purchase for myself, I couldn’t help but notice what shoppers were putting into their baskets. The baskets that caught my eye were those piled high with grocery items. Some baskets contained semi-prepared foods like dried mashed potatoes; others contained raw, natural products such as baking potatoes, large hams and packages of uncooked chicken. Milk, eggs and bread were omni-present. Some baskets contained crackers, chips and cookies along with staples. One basket in particular stood out. It was filled to the top with real food items, including some fresh vegetables like carrots.
In general, the shoppers were intent on what they were doing. Nevertheless, “excuse me or pardon me” were the worlds most commonly used. I myself even received two blessings, which I returned in kind.
Visual and printed media would have us believe that all poor are rude, crude and undeserving. Up front and personal, the story is different. These shoppers could teach a few politicians lessons in manners and deportment.