January 21, 2014 by Caroline Leland
Grocery Shopping Fail
You know how, when you were 13, you’d go to slumber parties and everyone would always want to play Truth or Dare? And the first Truth question would be, “What’s your most embarrassing moment?”
Well I finally have my answer.
After class today I spent an hour wandering through the aisles of Pamplona’s biggest supermarket, filling my cart with all the essentials: hot Mexican salsa, high-fiber breakfast cereal, giant cans of garbanzo beans, boxes of granola bars, gold-wrapped Ferrero Rocher chocolate, etc, etc.
As I approached the checkout line, I felt an inexplicable sense of nervous foreboding — which I tried to ignore as I loaded everything from my heavy cart onto the conveyor belt. The woman on the other side of the cash register electronically scanned each and every one of the many items, and I began stuffing the boxes and cans into my backpack. I glanced up at the small digital display to check the final total cost, which came to €64. I handed the cashier my new Spanish credit card with bated breath.
She swiped it and then turned the keypad towards me.
“PONER NUMERO SECRETO,” the screen said.
What secret number?
The secret number is secret even from me, it seems.
Which is unfortunate, to say the least, as I have €64 of food sitting in front of me waiting to be paid for, and an anxious businessman tapping his foot waiting to check out behind me. And a near-empty wallet — extremely light after a weekend trip to Valencia.
I peered dubiously into the depths of the wallet. One €10 and one €5.
So after some flustered bumbling through Spanish phrases, I conveyed that I was in fact unable to pay for the large amount groceries that I had collected. I awkwardly started pulling items back out of my backpack — can after box after can. Since they were each only two or three euros, we had to un-scan an awful lot of cans.
The impatient businessman looked on.
I dejectedly carried home my measly €15 euros of granola bars and garbanzo beans — exactly 23% of my original desired purchases.
Spanish debit card: 1