January 14, 2008

No cereal or candy for the weary …

Life is different here for the Gilpin family…

For those of you who know Matthew, you know that two of his favorite things are snack foods and breakfast cereal. The lack of adequate items in both of these categories has been difficult. How can one start a good day without ‘Captain Crunch’ or ‘Apple Jacks’ is beyond us? Below are some of the oddities when it comes to food and shopping which the Gilpin family has experienced.

1. The cereal isle consists of corn flakes and frosted flake like cereal only and is only a small section.

2. No breakfast isle exists in the supermarcados (supermarkets).

3. The candy isle consists of different types of chocolate bars and halls cough drops (and yes they are candy).

4. The soda isle is missing Pepsi products (especially Mountain Dew) and has more generic than name brand sodas.

5. You can buy a whole fish (head and all) or some fresh, stinky shrimp in the open market.

6. One can of Pringles in the grocery store costs about $8.00 American. (I got one can in my Christmas stocking – it was exciting!!!)

7. If you put groceries on your credit card you can decide how many payments to divide it up into – that goes for most anything that you buy here.

8. The rice and bean isle is huge, and the variety is mind-boggling.

9. The eggs here are not refrigerated, but they taste okay.

10. Yogurt is drinkable – you really need a straw because a spoon just won’t work – Lydia and Sammy love it.

11. You take your fruit to a person in the fruit section and get it bagged and priced by him or her before checking out.

12. When buying a light bulb you must test it before buying (if you do not they will send someone to do it for you).

13. When buying gas you are not allowed to pump it for yourself (and for those of you who wonder, gas is about $6:50 in U.S. Currency).

These are just some differences – all in all the food is really good, and besides the fact that you can’t buy anything pre-packaged, it’s not bad. We have not suffered in our eating habits – like all good things, they just have to change a bit. Lydia and Sam have transitioned well, and they really like Brazilian food. However, if you were thinking of sending a care package, we won’t turn it away:)