They Just Waited for Me to Leave Town
I believe that not long before I left Germany for my vacation in America I reported to y'all that the small verging on tiny American foods section in my neighborhood Karstadt (that's a department store for you not-living-in-Germany types) had begun to once again sell Hellmann's mayonnaise. Tiny, overpriced bottles but my love of Hellmann's knows no limit. They'd also about a year or so ago began to sell pickle relish, another thing I must have that I have found no acceptable substitute for in Germany. This had thrilled me no end (I'd been relying on family and friends to send me my fix) and when I was in Mississippi last month I didn't bother to buy any Hellmann's or pickle relish because I was freaking out about my luggage being overweight and I figured that if I
Last week I found myself down in the small grocery store that takes up half of the basement floor of Karstadt - the first time I'd been there since I returned to Germany - and found it completely changed. It was always overpriced and I only went there if I needed one thing and it wasn't convenient to get to a normal grocery store. Now it's been turned into some sort of upscale grocery store - mostly the same stuff and the same prices but if you give it a gourmet sounding name I suppose you can justify what you charge for a carton of yogurt. I wandered around trying to find the one thing I went there for - the arrangement of the store having been completely changed - and I realized the American food section is gone. Gone! No trace of it remains. You know I didn't ever buy them but I like having the option of going there to buy s'mores flavored PopTarts or tiny packs of Oreos if I wanted them. And once in a great while I'd lose my mind and buy a box of blueberry muffin mix to the tune of 5€ a box. And! And! It was my one source of microwave popcorn in the kettle corn flavor! But I can get over all this. I don't need the popcorn and I can make blueberry muffins without the aid of a mix but taking away my beloved American foods section ends my ability to buy Hellmann's and pickle relish with no more effort than it takes for me to walk the 200 meters to Karstadt. Now that's just cruel.
Luckily the internet and the ability of people to envision that
But I remembered another American foods website and there it all was. PopTarts. Muffin mix. Microwave kettle corn. Glorious Hellmann's. And pickle relish. Sweet, sweet pickle relish.
I think I need to set up a Hellmann's and relish subscription with these folks.