A side effect of being older, and/or working in radio, is becoming an insufferable morning person.  Sleeping in now is 5:30.  But this side effect can be beneficial if one wants to avoid crowded shopping.

For me, grocery shopping is tiresome.  Lots of people, lots of noise, driving a cart in heavy foot traffic, waiting in line.  I stay pleasant and courteous, and the other shoppers and staff are very kind, but in 30 minutes I am ready to get out of there.  During the work week I usually dart in, get only what I need, pay quickly and get out preferably within ten.

Saturday and Sunday mornings, waking at five, I have found the best time for major grocery shopping: first thing in the morning, soon after the store opens.

Credit: Travis Lee, TSM
Credit: Travis Lee, TSM

This is a rare moment when employees outnumber the customers.  The aisles are open.  You can hear the music clearly over the PA.  There are a few staff members stocking the shelves, no big deal.  The shelves are mostly stocked anyway.  You can casually stroll right to the products you want and not wait on somebody standing there trying to decide which brand to get.

Might have to negotiate the cart around another early riser or the store worker filling online orders, but it is significantly easier than half a dozen carts in the aisle with up to twice that many adults and another half dozen kids tagging along.

He was the only obstacle I faced. Credit: Travis Lee, TSM
He was the only obstacle I faced. Credit: Travis Lee, TSM

When you have all the items you wish, it's another easy walk to the self-checkout and right up to an open scanner station.  No line of shoppers at all.  Ring up and bag it all yourself, pay with a card and out the automatic doors.

Take the groceries home, put them away, and done.  The rest of the day is yours.

I understand for younger folks, this would be a challenge.  May have to set an alarm on a Saturday morning.  Yet this last weekend, I saw some young adults in the store with the older generation.  Perhaps they realized the easier experience.  And of course, nothing stopping you from going back to bed afterwards.

Now that I have shared my little tip, just watch.  Lots of readers on this app will also want to shop early to get it over with, and each morning will look like Black Friday.  To all the Employees, sorry about ruining your peace.

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