Supermarket Stories.


While I love going shopping, even for groceries, tonight I came close to the verge of screaming aloud in one of Karachi’s most popular supermarkets, Naheed Supermarket.

Going shopping in the first week of any month is always a stupid idea, given the swarms of people trying to get their monthly shopping done before their salaries are finished up, and combine that with a Saturday evening, when everyone’s just gotten off work, is a recipe for a nightmare.

So tonight, as I tried to find an empty large trolley at the entrance, a bunch of kids ran past with their parents, all sporting mini trolleys with JUST ONE ITEM in it. Now I know shopping is a fun experience for most children, but a little note to the parents of such offspring: Be considerate of other shoppers. As a litte kid with a packet of Kit Kats strolled by, I fervently prayed the kid drove his parents mad on his sugar high.

Anyhoo, while every aisle was chock full of women who seemed to think an aisle was large enough to fit their trolleys, the salesperson who they couldn’t stop badgering endlessly and their rather large frames; what was even astounding was that I actually spotted a woman staring into my trolley to see what I’d bought. I scanned my trolley to see if I had unconsciously picked up contraband drugs with the tissue boxes, but perhaps Curious Shopper was just plain curious.

Of course, there were stranger things to be seen. Like the girl I saw who looked atleast a decade away from puberty, but was swathed in a full length shalwar kameez and scarf. Or the boy who was probably courteously holding a filled to the brim shopping cart for his mother or sister, and didn’t realize that the boxes of sanitary pads in the basket had fallen and were about to be processed under trolley wheels, and who looked slightly embarassed when I handed the boxes to him.

Frustrated, tired of saying ‘excuse me’ to get women to make way, who unfortunately were more interested in seeing what their daughters-in-law were buying, and wondering how the store management dealt with it all, I made my way home with the firm resolve to find better things to do the next time Saturday rolls around.

7 Comments so far

  1. Jon (unregistered) on June 5th, 2005 @ 4:13 am

    My parents always shop on Saturdays at the Naheed store & my little brother loved to take the shopping cart and zoom zoom it around as a car (I hope he’s grown up enough to stop doing that by now).

    I’m sorry if they caused you any trouble in any way. Rest assured I’ll forward them your concerns & they’ll be nice next time.

  2. Anathema (unregistered) on June 6th, 2005 @ 12:08 pm

    Thast why i prefer to walk with boulder-heavy legs on weekdays, after office that, or dead early mornings on a weekend, when the world is bound to be asleep. but never shopping on a saturday. if nothing else, finding parking is hell. naheed is still sapacious. try shopping at agha’s and paradise. ultra crammed aisles with women who dress up to be seen shopping, just in case a fellow kitty-party aunty spots them there. and then. its ugly: chit-chatty salon-painted aunties who block those aisles wich cant sport more than one person at a time beteen them!

  3. Tariq (unregistered) on June 6th, 2005 @ 1:21 pm

    I find that the nuisance of being in an overcrowded super store can best be avoided if u go there on a Sunday morning, which is the best time in many ways. No traffic on the road, easily available parking, and to top it off, a serene shopping experience. So next time trying going to Naheed’s around 11:30 in the a.m. on a Sunday!

  4. Arsalaan Haleem (unregistered) on June 6th, 2005 @ 10:29 pm

    Like Tariq, my best time to go shopping at Naheed is also on Sunday mornings between 11am and 12pm.

    Not only you get to park in front of the doorways, but when you walk in the aisles are full and you notice that you are only the second or the third customer in the whole store.

    I do recommend all to give this a try atleast once – i.e. sacrifice one of your Sunday mornings to experience the serenity of shopping in a quite Naheed Superstore.

  5. saba (unregistered) on June 6th, 2005 @ 10:44 pm

    I have tried shopping on a Sunday morning – and you’re right the experience is quite different – I just wanted to share a crazy shopping story :)

  6. Saadie (unregistered) on June 7th, 2005 @ 1:21 pm

    Last five days and first 10 days of a month are a big No No for Naheed or for that matter any super market of its kind, suffered it once again last night.

  7. Arsalaan Haleem (unregistered) on June 8th, 2005 @ 11:47 pm

    Naheed is not a bad shop to shop in. The only thing that I hate about going in is that once in, I just cannot resist not buying something. I often end up spending more than 100 rupees which I often hate afterwards.

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