It had to happen. I got lost in the morning looking for the local open-air food market and ended up at the Coop, one of the large supermarket chains in Switzerland. As I expected, some things are a little more, others a little less than in Australia, but overall I’d say on a par. Spaghetti $1/packet. Tins tomatoes $1.50.$75 spent in total, with more to come to establish the basics of life here.
When I get home, googlemaps show me where I went wrong and I find the foodmarket, just a five minute walk away. It is mostly fruit and vegetables plus a cheese stall. I know I have to go to France to buy certain things that will be half the price there – meat in particular, but also cheese. Still, if you come from Australia, you will not notice the price of cheese in Geneva. I’m glad to have found a place to buy cheese since the supermarket selection of cheese seems to me to be even worse than an Australian equivalent.
Of course there is the odd extravagance in the food market. Asparagus is $13/kg which is a lot by Australian standards. But most of it is, again, on a par. Good quality green beans were $8/kg, but if you wanted cheaper ones they were there to be had. I bought with a view to making minestrone. I also got several hundred grams of spinach, maybe for spinach and bacon spaghetti? I’d like pine nuts for that, and I haven’t noticed any yet. I also haven’t spotted any bird’s eye chillis. Damn. I don’t like the coarseness of big fat chillis, they seem closer to capsicums to me.
I can’t resist a treat: a punnet of raspberries for $4.50. I eat them for lunch.
A bit later in the day I head out in search of bacon, or some such, to add to my soup. Two minutes walk away I have a Spanish grocery shop and I head to the butcher. He slices off a slab for me maybe the best bacon I’ve ever tasted. That from a bacon snob who spends her whole life bitching about how hard it is to get decent bacon. $5.50 for 8 thickish slices.
$20 phone topup
Total spent today: $130
Total spent: $142