Wednesday, 1 July 2020

Grocery shopping list for June 2020

This post is the eighteenth in a series and the fourth with rona.

1 June

Drove to Woolworths and bought (see receipt below) Edam cheese, apples, blueberries, a sultana butter cake, coleslaw, potato salad with Dijon mustard, tea, soap, milk, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar).

3 June

Drove to Woolies and bought (see receipt below) sliced pastrami, sliced ham, lentil soup, lamb soup, cauliflower soup, canola oil, bread, instant oats, bhuja, Tim Tams, mouthwash, garbage bags, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar).

4 June

Went in the car to the shopping centre to buy something for my wardrobe and while there I popped into Harris Farm Markets and bought (see receipt below) veal New York steaks, eye fillet steak, sauerkraut, sliced beetroot, tabbouleh, artichoke hearts, olives, and hot English mustard.

5 June

A wide-ranging email from the Woolworths CEO arrived at my inbox at 3.36pm. In it, Brad Banducci talked about the company’s use of more environment-friendly packaging, as well as reusable and recyclable tote bags. The email mentioned how the company had lifted restrictions – due to the virus – on goods with the exception of “antibacterial wipes, hand wash and frozen fruit” – no surprise, I guess, for the first two items, but … frozen fruit?! (Can’t go without my smoothies, Brad.) Staff would once again, Banducci went on, be seen packing patrons’ purchases at checkouts, including for those bags customers themselves would bring to the supermarket, but safeguards would remain: “Keeping our customers and teams safe is our top priority, so hygiene and social distancing measures remain in place.”

6 June

Went in the car to Woolies and bought (see receipt below) sliced ham, lentil salad, coleslaw, apples, blueberries, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar). Since my last visit, managers had turned into scales the trays on the store’s checkout machines, and mine produced three or four errors, to fix each of which the clerk had to walk to the terminal to operate it – an eventuality at odds with words contained in the email. I exchanged some civil words with the staffer about the measure the store had taken, and she said they’d lost “quite a lot” of stock in the past, adding that she’d pass my remarks onto management.

Later the same day I visited the Woolworths website – and reset my password; I hadn’t used the website for several months and had cancelled my subscription – putting in an order (see screenshot below) for fillet steak, lamb chops, barramundi fillets, ling fillets, bean salad, basmati rice, olive oil spread, taramosalata, flavoured mineral water (no-sugar), and a plain, unlined notebook. Delivery due on the 9th of the month. 

Later, I went out on foot and bought, at the bottle shop, two six-packs of Carlton Zero.

8 June

Drove to Woolworths and bought (see receipt below) eggs, bread, milk, tomatoes, an oakleaf lettuce, mushrooms, two types of biscuits (white chocolate and cranberry, and white chocolate and macadamia nuts), a sultana butter cake, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar).

Later, I went to the Campos website and ordered coffee (see screenshot below).

In the evening an SMS arrived from Woolworths reminding me of the next day’s delivery.

9 June

An email from Woolworths was in my inbox, timestamped 5.06am, referencing my order, and telling me that the variable weight items I had chosen meant that a refund of $15.43 was due to me.

At 7.05am an SMS from the company informed me that the delivery would arrive between 8.37am and 9.37am, and at 9.18am the intercom buzzed and I let the deliveryman into the lobby via the street door. I grabbed my keys and some bags intending to go downstairs but when the lift arrived – he was in it! He stalled on the threshold, and it was clear that he didn’t want to approach so I led him to my unit. I asked him if it was possible to ask for no bags on the website when ordering but he said that, due to the virus, bags were always being used now. Sensible.

I packed the protein in sandwich bags preparatory to putting it in the freezer, and deposited the rest of my purchases in the fridge and on the floor in the hallway, finishing up around 9.35am. They hadn’t sent barramundi with skin on but, rather, the flat fillets with no skin. The lamb chops – which cost $16.15 (see tax invoice below) – would do for four meals, and I cut the steak into smaller pieces so that it, too, would do for four meals. The steaks they sent were enormous, as was the A4-sized notebook with its 120 pages.

I had to go out to the pharmacy to pick up some things, including scalp cleanser, so while in the arcade I went to Coles and bought some no-sugar mineral water. Later, at 5.45pm, an SMS arrived from Shippit about the coffee delivery, which was scheduled for Friday the 12th. At 5.49pm an email from Australia Post arrived at my inbox (though I only saw it the next day) telling me that the parcel would arrive on Thursday the 11th.

10 June

Went out and popped in at Woolworths where I bought blueberries, some containers of soup (one pea-and-ham, one tomato, one lamb, and one lentil), “spiced roasted cauliflower and winter veges,” a block of Bega cheese, hummus and harissa spread, buhja, and Tim Tams.

12 June

Received an SMS from Shippit at 9am, plus an email from Australia Post timestamped 7.06am, about the coffee delivery. The email said the box would arrive on this day.

On this day just before 10am my doctor’s surgery phone me and told me that my test results showed normal levels; on Wednesday I had had some blood samples taken. Tests included ones for cholesterol and blood sugar. A relief, indicating that my diet – more salads and fewer carbohydrates – was working as anticipated. 

At 10.06am the intercom buzzed and I answered the call, then was asked to open the street door so the man could leave the coffee in the lobby. I went down and fetched it right away. The box came with a note inside it:

An email arrived from Australia Post at 10.14am:

13 June

I was out at Waverly dropping off unwanted books at a charity shop and while in that suburb (found a parking spot on the main street; unexpectedly, as the traffic was heavy) I stopped at a grocery store and bought (see receipt below) blueberries, apples, blackberries, taramosalata, and turmeric sauerkraut. 

In the following photo you can see the store’s sign over the pavement outside.

14 June

Drove to Woolworths and bought (see receipt below) sliced ham, pastrami, marinaded goat’s cheese, chillies, lentil salad, three containers of soup (lentil, lamb, and cauliflower), strawberries, a sultana butter cake, white chocolate and cranberry biscuits, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar). This month I saw, after reviewing my receipts, that the price of Schweppes infused mineral water varied from $2.02 per bottle, to $1.80, and (on this day) $1.25. It makes you wonder why they change the price, and what prompts them to do so. The price ($6.50) of the lamb soup and the lentil soup were the same as 10 days earlier, but this time the cauliflower soup ($4.50) was a dollar more.

In the afternoon I drove to Lakemba and bought a banana cake, eggplant pickles, okra pickles, a melon, grapes, mandarins, kiwi fruit, and Turkish delight. Sunday is a good day to go there as more parking spaces are available on the main street, and the loading zones don’t apply. 

In the evening I went to the convenience store and bought milk.

15 June

Went in the car to Woolies and bought sliced pastrami, bread, harissa hummus, bean salad, eggs, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar). The over-sensitive checkout machine gave two errors (instead of the usual one) and the carpark toll system (again) required me to back the car up to get the boom gate to open. 

No matter that I drove slowly approaching the mechanism, which has a device in it that reads the car’s numberplate and that – if the time that you’ve spent inside the space is not more than 90 minutes – lets you go for free. Like the checkout machines, which have scales built into them, the carpark fee-processing system is finicky, leading to errors.

16 June

Had to go to the pharmacy and while in the arcade I dropped in at Coles and bought (see receipt below) Scotch fillet steak, coleslaw, couscous with pumpkin, quinoa and tabbouleh salad, blue cheese, and Tim Tams (which on the 18th would trend on Twitter after the British PM used them in a press conference). If you read the receipt you’ll see that the labels for each kind of biscuit are not uniform. Where one flavour of Tim Tam is labelled “Arnotts Tim Tam 160gram”, another is labelled “Arnotts chocolate bi 175gram”. The person putting in the text for the labels either wasn’t consistent, or else the text for each kind of biscuit was entered into the store’s computer system at different times by different people.

19 June

Drove to Woolworths and bought (see receipt below) lentil salad, “spiced roasted cauliflower and winter veg,” lamb soup, cauliflower soup, sundried tomatoes, chillies, an avocado, instant oats, bhuja, milk, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar). Again, multiple errors on the checkout machine, and the carpark toll system required me to back up from the boom gate so that it would open.

20 June

Went to Coles on the way home from the city and bought a snapper fillet, a barramundi fillet, prawns, sliced roast chicken, flat bread, a capsicum, mushrooms, an eggplant, green beans, ginger, garlic, a green oak lettuce, a jar of parsley, dill and tarragon seafood sauce, toothpaste, and liquid soap. The checkout machine gave three separate errors, each of which had to be cleared by a member of staff.

Later I went out to the bottle shop and bought two six-packs of Carlton Zero.

21 June

Stopped at Coles on my walk back from Barangaroo and bought chicken thighs, cucumbers, broccoli, and smoked cod fillets, and later drove to Bunnings and bought drain cleaner.

22 June

Drove to Woolworths and bought some Schweppes no-sugar flavoured drink, and no-sugar flavoured mineral water. The bottles were expensive at $2 each. On the way out of the parking garage I stopped the car while the ticketing machine processed my license plate number, which took about 10 seconds, and so entailed waiting.

23 June

Walked to Coles and bought (see receipt below) meatballs, scallops, asparagus, blueberries, hummus with jalapeno, pine nuts, chicken noodle soup, and flavoured mineral water.

24 June

Went to the bottle shop and bought two six-packs of Carlton Zero.

25 June

Went to the Fish Market and at the delicatessen bought (see receipt below) sliced smoked wagyu beef, duck and cherry pâté, d’Affinois cheese, queso Iberico, and Portuguese tarts. While there I also bought shallots, ginger, garlic, an onion, tomatoes, and cos lettuce.

Later, went to the convenience store and bought Jatz crackers and some chips.

26 June

Drove to Woolworths and bought salmon steaks, basmati rice, instant oats, Greek mix (olives and sundried tomatoes), “spiced roast cauliflower and winter veg”, lentil salad, blueberries, bread, milk, dishwashing liquid, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar).

29 June

Drove to Woolies and parked. I forgot to bring change with me and asked the cashier at the front of the store if she could give me some gold coins (what $1 and $2 coins are called in Australia). She said she would but also offered me a token in a keyring fob bracket (see photo below), that cost me 35 cents. I attached the holder to my keyring and used the token to release a trolley, then went and got sliced pastrami, sliced ham, a butter cake, a banana cake, “spiced cauliflower and winter veg”, a container of bean salad, milk, basmati rice, blueberries, and flavoured mineral water (no-sugar).

The person who had used the trolley before me had left a $1 coin, which I pocketed, counting two lucky stars.

30 June

Went to the pharmacy and while in the arcade dropped in at Coles and bought barramundi, duck legs, tomatoes, a capsicum, an onion, apples, blueberries, kiwi fruit, and a melon. On the way home dropped in at the convenience store and bought honey and pork dumplings.

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