Friday, July 13, 2007

Damn you, Lidl!

This morning we talked about shopping in German class and Lidl came up. I remembered that this week is "Mexican Week", when Lidl sells "Mexican" foods that they don't normally have, is this week! All I could think about for the rest of class was the refried beans I was going to have for lunch, and the crunchy taco shells I was going to stock up on. Maybe I'll get a tomato to eat with the beans, too, I thought. Oh yum. I know I can get this stuff at Rewe, but it's ridiculously overpriced. Sorry Rewe, I paid about 60 cents in Boston for refried beans. I'm not often willing to pay 3 euro here for something that probably isn't even as good.

I stopped at my office to print out some articles I am supposed to read then biked over to Lidl. I really dug being there in the middle of the day instead of later - there was actually a lot of good-looking produce stocked! I could walk down the aisle without wanting to strangle seven people who are in my way and totally oblivious! I picked up some cereal and green peppers then made my way over to the Mexican section.

It was total crap. There was a box that said flour tortillas, but it was empty. There was no sign at all of taco shells or refried beans. The only thing offered that even looked like food was canned "chili beans", whatever those are supposed to be. The rest were bland-looking sauces, snackes, and just-add-water mysteries, as well as a selection of bizarre frozen "Mexican" foods such as Mexican wraps, Mexican pizza, and Mexican chicken nuggets. Arrrrgh!!! I went home depressed, with only a box of cereal, Uncle Ben's rice-for-lazy-people, and two green peppers to show for the trip.

Grr. I hope they restock.

When I got home a nice older lady from the second floor was in the elevator with me. Things have improved for me in the elevator conversation area since I last wrote on this topic. However, today I really thought I heard her ask me if I was visiting a cat. I was really confused. I just said no and she said something else, but no idea what. Oh lawdy. Oh well, I don't think I messed up too badly, because she was still very friendly with me when she got off the elevator and I wished her a nice day. (Maybe even with proper adjective declination, but don't count on that.)


  1. Well, it's not REAL Mexican food but it helps us to survive. They sometimes take normal stuff and stick "Mexican" and a sombrero on it. We just buy the tortillas, taco shells and such - the kits and spice mixes are nothing special. They might restock, but you never know. Sometimes it's "be here at 8 a.m. on the first day (which is Thurdsdays) or you're out of luck" :-)

    P.S. The mystery flower is a gladiola!

  2. Lidl *never* restocks, at least I've never seen it happen :-(

    See, I knew Christina would be able to identify the mystery flower!

  3. Congratulations on making small talk in German! (Too bad about the Mexican food though.)

  4. Did you know that Lidl also has a really poor record in labour relations? We've seriously cut back our shopping there since we found out how they treat their workers. Lousy products, lousy management. What a combo!

  5. Christina: Thanks for the flower tip!! :D It's about to shoot off another one.
    It was the shells and tortillas that we wanted, but alas...I guess we were too late. If they sell this well, I wonder why they don't just have them all year?

    Martina: Yeah, we haven't had any luck yet :/ Hopefully our relatives will bring us some stuff, or we'll pick some up when we visit Boston in September!

    Mary: Later I wondered if she maybe asked me if we had been visited by a cat!! That would make more sense...too bad I messed it up though!

    Ian: What about Aldi? Their employees always seem ready to burn the whole store down, while the employees at Lidl are really friendly (at least in Neuenheim).

  6. Mexican chicken nuggets, lol. Reminds me of the "Authentic American Chili Dog" we got at a fair last summer.It was sort of a bockwurst/frikadelle sausage thing in a crispy roll with onions and some spicy green sauce. It was actually quite tasty, but I certainly saw no actual chili anywhere in that entire stand.

    As for 3-buck refried beans, we found dried pinto beans at Kaufland (Wachtel-Bohnen, not to be confused with cranberry beans, which, in typical German fashion, they also call Wachtel-Bohnen) and it's so easy to make a huge batch of your own. Boil in lots of plain water for 2 minutes, let sit for 3 hours, then pressure cook for 15 minutes (or long cook on low heat for 2-3 hrs) with chopped onion, salt & cumin, squish with a potato masher or food processor and tada... enough to last for many Mexican meals. Freezes great. And all for like 2 Euros.

  7. Interesting chili dog!
    We do know how to make refried beans and did it once in a while in the US. Frankly it's a royal pain in the ass if you're jonesing for some refried beans within the next, you know, day or so, and I'd rather be able to just buy them in a can, but we'll do it if we get desperate!

  8. I'm quite surprised how quickly Lidl runs out of things during Mexican Week (they usually have it twice a year), which is why I get there on the first day of it and stock up.

    The red beans are kidney bean type things, I think.

  9. I drove to the Farm Fest twice today. Sold the winning car @ the derby two years ago to Joe's son-in-law. Creek is dry yet even with all the lightning and rain. Helicopter rides are 35 two takes 70. Promise myself 70 bottle of wine and good supper

  10. yeah i work at lidl in UK, its complete rubbish, honest to god. the health and safety (altho i sometimes disagree with) in our store is terrible! we have to lift those silver tables from the middle, stack them 3 high, and theyre not light either! our warehouse is always overfilled, pallets are always stacked high, and countless other things such as equipment that hasnt been serviced in its entire lifetime.


I love commenters!