Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Shopping in NYC

I am always struck by the uniqueness of everything in NYC. It seems everything in the city is an exception to the norm. One thing that still amuses me is going into a store and seeing the escalators for shopping carts. You will find these curious conveyor belts in grocery stores, the Target store and even Home Depot.

To make the best use of space, stores are often multilevel and it's easy to get people up and down using traditional escalators, but if you want to take your purchases with you you must push your cart onto the adjacent belt and when you get to the bottom, your cart is magically waiting for you.

I don't think many people find this nearly as interesting as I do...I guess I am easily amused...

...and easily annoyed.

I generally don't shop much in the city because it is also hard to browse in such cramped quarters. For example, I found myself in The Container Store on Saturday with no intention of buying anything. I had never been in the store before and just wanted to see what they sold. I ended up walking out about two minutes later after getting trapped in nearly every aisle I walked down.

But the ultimate annoyance here is grocery shopping. It's not much fun in general, but is especially frustrating at Trader Joe's and the store in Union Square in particular. Because Trader Joe's is so much cheaper than any other grocer in the city and because there are only two in NY (this the only Manhattan location) it's often as crazy as a Best Buy the day after Thanksgiving.

There have been days I have waited in line outside the store to even get in and nights I have gone to the store only to find completely bare shelves and nothing that I am looking for. The lines to check out often wrap around the entire store and although they always move fairly quickly it makes it difficult to browse the aisles.

So while I could shop for probably anything I've ever wanted in NYC, I don't. My empty kitchen cupboard can attest to that.


Mary said...

That was an interesting post! I enjoyed reading it. I have never seen the escalator for the shopping carts.

Amy said...

Check out the Whole Foods in Union Square, the Target in Brooklyn or the Bed, Bath and Beyond in Chelsea if you are really curious :)

Also, I should have added that I hate that grocery shopping almost always requires a trip to two, if not three, stores to find everything.