Dorm Life: doing groceries

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I’ve been living in a ‘dorm’ (which I would generally refer to either an apartment, boarding house or condo) for almost four years now. And I can say that it can be quite difficult to be separated from my parents. I have to do all things. From cleaning the room to cooking as well as getting up early for school without my mom or dad waking me up. From first to the early part of second year, I had to do the laundry. I didn’t feel like doing it. I don’t know, but doing laundry is the least of the house chores I would do.

But I really like doing groceries. Going to the supermarket and picking vegetables or meat or cereals is just fun. I especially love bargains. There are times that beef would have discounts or fruits during their seasons would get so cheap. There was a time when oranges went on sale. For 50 pesos you could buy around 6 or 8 pieces. I bought a lot and it seemed like I’ve eaten oranges for a week!

The vegetable section is also fantastic. When I feel like eating Sinigang, I would buy sliced long beans, eggplants, kangkong and okra. And, oh, the white onions are just perfect for sinigang. It brings veggie sweetness to the sour taste of the sinigang, making the dish very delicate and, I’m telling you, very yummy!

I also like the part of the vegetable section where there are root-crops like potatoes, sweet potatoes, purple yam, etc. As I’m into nilagang baka, I really want to make sure that the potatoes have to be of good quality, because if not, it would ruin the taste of the nilaga.

One thing that I enjoyed also about supermarkets is that they’re clean and air-conditioned. That makes doing groceries a little bit easier. But I like wet markets as well. You can find more bargains in the wet market than in supermarkets. Apart from being cheaper, vegetables and meat products tend to be fresher, at least that’s my experience in Mandaluyong where my first dorm was located.

But being fond of doing groceries does not necessarily mean that I’m efficient in doing it. Earlier on, I would buy a lot of unnecessary things. The worst was that I had to throw away a lot of food; bread, meat, vegetables, you name it.

I would also tend to buy lots of junk foods like sodas, chocolates, chips and instant noodles. That’s why I tend to lose a lot of weight even though I keep on eating. That’s quite strange I thought because those foods were supposed to make one fat. I don’t know, maybe my metabolism just happens to be really fast.

But as I get more used to it, I get a lot smarter in doing groceries. Now I have to have a list of what to buy so that I won’t pick unnecessary things. If I like something that I’ve never tried before, I would buy just one piece not the whole pack if it happens to be sold per piece. If not, I would not even buy it.

In that way, I became a lot efficient. I save a lot of time since I don’t have to go to and fro the supermarket in confusion. I also save a lot of money since my spending has actually decreased quite dramatically. Before, I would usually spend 700 pesos a week. And you see that would eat a lot of my allowance since what I bought was usually just for dinner during weekends and, of course, for snacks. Now I only spend around 200-500 pesos a week. And not every week I go to the supermarket. That saves a lot of money and time. So I can now have more time to study and do things that I have to do.

With that I see that planning is really important. It allows us to maximize our time, money as well as our effort. And that redounds to anything that we do. Either doing a research or house chores, planning has to be there if we want to see good results.

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