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Grocery Shopping

Grocery Shopping

Have you ever been to a grocery store in Italy?

Bright red tomatoes
Bright red tomatoes

Fare la spesa is the expression that means to do one’s grocery shopping.  It is a very different experience from shopping in the U.S. where you may pick up a tomato to see if it feels ripe or raise a cantaloupe to your nose to appraise the scent.     In Italy it is frowned upon to touch the fresh produce.  In fact, thin plastic gloves (guanti) are provided to ensure that this does not happen.

Gloved and ready to select
Gloved and ready to select

And if that was not daunting enough, you take your carefully selected produce to a scale where you look for the corresponding picture and insert the number associated with that picture into the screen to obtain a price.

Price is printed out
Price is printed out

When you are ready to check out you are well advised to bring your own bags (buste).  If not you will be charged for the plastic bag and may receive a look indicating that you have made a ‘brutta figura’ ( bad impression)

If this does not appeal to you then stop by your local  fruttivendolo  (green grocer) where you are handed a wicker basket when you enter the shop to fill with your produce.

Sniff and squeeze to your heart’s content.

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Comments (2)

  1. Saverio Reply

    Hi. I want to correct two Italian words. 1) ” Fare le spese” or “farne le spese” means the conseguences of somenthing You did: You will pay for it..! Better: “fare la spesa”. 2) The correct word is : ” Fruttivendolo”.

    1. Lisa Reply

      Thanks for the correction. Between spell check and my poor Italian it is always a learning curve. Grazie Saverio

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