how much I dislike Wal-mart? And I mean REALLY DISLIKE! This feeling of disdain was not a result of my food conversion. I've actually felt this way for years. I will occasionally go there for something that I can't find somewhere else in town or if for whatever reason I don't have time to go the extra 5-10 minutes to Target. Wednesday's trip to Wal-mart was a result of the latter reason. I needed to pick up a couple of library books that were being held at the library (about a 10 minute drive from our house). Then, I really needed to print out a few pictures for a project for my class. I felt like the easiest thing to do would be to run in Wal-mart (which is about 5 minutes past my house going the opposite direction of the library) and use the automatic photo kiosk. This should have been a quick in and out situation, but I had both girls in tow and, as young children do, they wanted to look at the toys. I also needed to run in the grocery store and pick up bananas, pasta, and (I'm almost afraid to mention it on a real food blog) heavy whipping cream (since we don't yet buy raw milk). The longer the girls looked at the toys I thought it would just be easier to buy the 3 items at Wal-mart rather than make an additional stop.
We first went to the dairy section and got the cream. Then, we headed to the pasta aisle. With each step, I felt more and more depressed. These "food" aisles seemed so foreign to me. I realized that I couldn't remember the last time I bought food at Wal-mart. I couldn't find many of the better brands I've been buying lately and I had a hard time finding any REAL food. I quickly grabbed the pasta and headed to the produce section for bananas.
On the way, I passed a mom and daughter standing in front of the frozen section debating whether to get lasagna or enchiladas. And, it occurred to me, this is what our culture is all about. Stop by the grocery store and pick up something pre-made without ever giving a second thought to the ingredients you're actually eating. Sometimes, one might turn the box over to read the nutritional information, but how many of us read the ingredients labels? This was one of the first changes I made during my food conversion. Now, I ALWAYS read the ingredients label. You never know what you'll find lurking there.
I got to the banana display, selected a bunch and headed toward the checkout. I left there with a sick feeling and a sadness for our culture. Bigger, faster, cheaper doesn't necessarily mean better.