Gretchen Rubin

In a Foreign Country, Do You Enjoy Visiting a Grocery Store?

In a Foreign Country, Do You Enjoy Visiting a Grocery Store?

Somehow, I'd never noticed how interesting I found it to visit grocery stores in foreign countries.

For some reason, this didn't occur to me as a "real" thing to do, so I never thought about it -- and never went out of my way to visit a grocery store when I was traveling.

The other day, though, some friends and I got in an animated discussion about the joy of visiting grocery stores while traveling.

And I realized, "This is a real thing, other people feel the same way! It's fun to visit a grocery store in a foreign city. It deserves to be a proper stop, just like a museum or a monument."

It's a window into a different culture. It's fascinating to see the unfamiliar packaging and food items.  I still remember the first time I saw unrefrigerated soft cartons of milk in a French supermarket.

Now that I've consciously realized how much I enjoy doing this, I'll make sure to do it on every trip.

How about you? Do you like to visit grocery stores when you travel? Are there other things you like to do, as well as the traditional sight-seeing, as a way to engage more deeply with a new place?

Having new experiences boosts happiness, but it's not always easy to figure out ways to allow the newness to penetrate.

Speaking of traveling, here are 9 questions to ask to show your interest in someone's big, life-changing trip.

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