Sometimes, when all the stuff you own is spread between 1) a distant storage locker, 2) a large roller-suitcase, and 3) a few boxes in USPS transit to an island really quite far away, you start to feel like you don’t have a place to call home.
But then: you walk into what has got to be one of the most diverse grocery stores in the nation, and then…phew. Feeling better already.
The range of languages, cultures and vestments among the shoppers was astonishing for this suburb in Georgia.* Even in NYC it would be hard to find so much cultural richness within one city block, let alone a single store.
For a lot of folks who find themselves far from their place of origin, locating the proper ingredients to whip up a meal just “like Mom used to make,” can be the difference between feeling unsettled, or right at home. So for this displaced wanderer, I guess it is not entirely surprising that it would be in such a room, in which so many others must regularly find some measure of existential comfort while selecting ingredients for fresh and familiar dishes, I would also begin to feel a little less disoriented, and less alone.
(*We are in GA briefly, visiting my brother and his family, on our way to Saipan. Because Georgia is on the way to Saipan from New Mexico, of course.)