Posted by: fireweaver | February 2, 2009

not quite in english

round about the first time i visited a big asian grocery store, i was pretty solidly hooked.  it’s not such a great idea for people who live primarily off of boxed/canned food, since finding the familar brands is a bit tricky.  for those of us who generally buy raw staples, though, these places are amazing.  better quality, better selection, and way cheaper produce?  ditto on the meat & fish?  Vivian & i used to make the trek 45 minutes away to the big han ah reum on the west side of b’more at least once a month or so, if for no other reason than the fresh-stamped rice cakes and the fruit.  i’ve frequented other asian markets after i’ve moved here, but a new h-mart opened up right next to the local trader joe’s, so it’s a 2-stop all-in-one-trip bonanza now.

the music in the b’more h-mart always struck Vi & me as rather eclectic.  never plain washed-out muzak, sometimes we’d end up with funky bouncy j-pop, sometimes we got strident chinese opera, sometimes it was easy listening 70s & 80s.  apparently, this new one by my house plans on running the same way.  i strolled in for my first real shopping excursion in the place last night, grabbed my cart, and as though it were my own personal soundtrack, a familiar electro beat started up.  by the time i hit the produce section, daft punk was informing me we were going ‘around the world‘.  bemusedly/surreally rocking along, i proceeded to the usual amazing produce bargains to be found at the asian market:  99 cent packs of blackberries, 98 cent pounds of strawberries, and the most sexually beautiful plums i think i’ve ever seen.  lord knows if they’re tasty, but they’re lovely to look at:

the produce and the music stayed delightful right up to the checkout.  i suspected something like a satellite radio that a 20ish cashier had giddily set on the alt-awesome channel, but then some recorded announcer came on smoothly between songs to remind us all how fabulous the h-mart experience was, so they’re apparently making hip mix tapes at the corporate office.  i rolled up to the shiny new checkouts, adorned with the standard sorts of fuzzy warm pastel photos of groceries, when i noticed the signs were a little un-standard, actually.  i lol’d, and once again had cause to thank mr.Christopher for my new and wonderful (and tiny and therefore highly portable) camera:

yep.  in addition to rockin’ tunes and sexual plums, i was additionally provided with the best humanity on this grocery store trip.  why shop anywhere else?



  1. Great pics! And can I say, “wow”… I want an “exchange of warm feelings” when I go grocery shopping! So I’m starting to really look forward to Rest. Week. It doesn’t take much to make me happy 😉

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