Thursday, June 01, 2006


I went to the Tesco this morning. That's the German supermarket/Monoprix-type store that's in the Czech Republic. I've been buying things so I can eat dinner at the apartment some nights because I don't get out of class until
8 pm, and I usually have reading or HW to do. I've been to the Tesco twice before. Once just as I was passing by the day after I arrived here (I stopped in to look around--in the afternoon), and then one day at about 11 am. Today, I went at 9:30 am, things are crazy at the Tesco at 9:30 am. First, the place is packed. I got in line behind about fifteen people to check out, and there are about twelve checkout lines. The people were slow and unfriendly. And the lines would stretch back through the aisles, so when you have to cut through people to get across the aisle, they give you mean looks and things that I don't imagine are very nice in Czech. They actually won't move for you. You have to push through them yourself.

But, they craziest part was the deli section. I was trying to get some sandwich meat, and there were about thirty little old Czech men and women with their baskets crowded around this one section of the aisle. They'd shove their way to the front, get what they wanted, get stuck, and then curse and shove their way back out. If you've seen the movie "Mean Girls," it was a lot like when Lindsey Lohan imagines all of the school kids as wild animals attacking each other. Little old women would yell at each other and shove the others' carts away. They'd dig their elbows and baskets into the backs of the people at the front to get them to move, only the people at the front couldn't move because there wasn't a square inch of space available anywhere. I attempted to get to the front a couple of times--standing there, waiting for a hole to open up, not pushing anyone, but definitely getting pushed back. After about three minutes of that, I stepped back, observed the situation, found an area that appeared to be populated with some more "sturdy" older women with fewer sharp-edged carts, and plowed my way through. I'm not sure what kind of sandwich meat I ended up with because I only had time to grab the first thing I could reach. I wasn't sure what it was, but I knew if I tried to put it back and get something else, I'd get swallowed even more into the black hole of angry, Czech sandwich-makers, and I wasn't prepared for that. I think it's normal sandwich meat, though. I hope. Next time I go (if) I attempt it again, I'm going to take my camera and video it.

I'm still having trouble with those pictures, by the way. You can see all of them on my Shutterfly page, but I'll try to get them put up here eventually.

Oh! I found Leno and Conan on our TV at 11 pm! Other than that, all we get is one CNN program that plays over and over sick of CNN. I was talking to another kid in the group about how I was getting tired of watching CNN. He asked me what I would rather watch, and I told him my family was a Fox News family, and he gave me this strange look and said, "I figured you would really be into CNN." ????? Okay. Nothing against those who like CNN, but I just can't figure out what I've said or done that would make him think I are really "into" CNN. We then started talking about traveling, and he said that he doesn't really get into culture or history or seeing the sights. He's over here more for the nightlife. Yep, that pretty much sums up what's going on over here. Obviously I'm an idiot for thinking there would be others coming on this trip to see and experience the culture and history of one of Europe's great cities. Strangely, I'm not seeing any "study" in this study abroad program except for the studying I'm doing. Actually, it's wrong to say that. There are a few others who are studying some, too. But, overall, the rest of the group acts like Prague is going to run out of beer so they've got to drink it all as quickly as they can. It's Prague. The beer's gonna be here for a while. The beer will be in LBK, too. The castle and museums won't, however.


Dad said...

I guess its really true that Americans are probably the most patient and polite people in terms of waiting in lines. Seems like every other culture is "survival of the fittest." So, did you figure out what the "mystery meat" was?

Whitney said...

I think we're okay. I'm pretty sure it's just ham.

John Dark said...

I can't get off work to come... I am thoroughly disheartened that I can't help you in your time of travel need. Just come home soon. I miss you!

Whitney said...

That's okay. I figured it would be tough to work out. I think I've got an alternate solution, though, so I should be able to persevere to the end of the trip. Then, when I get home, we should take a road trip to somewhere!