Saturday, March 21, 2009

I'm a Senior companion!!

Well, it's really no big deal inasmuch as it was automatic when Sister Harper left and Sister Humphrey arrived. But, it is more responsibility--the rent money is put on my msf card and I am no longer able to depend on Sister Harper to tell me which form of transportation we take and what number we take.

Last Saturday, Sister Humphrey needed to buy some boots and so we ventured into downtown Riga. We got on the 21 Autobus and rode to Stockman's and then walked around the corner to the Tirgus (open market). The bus was so crowded that we were held upright by the crowd. I couldn't reach a pole or anything to hang on to. Now I know what cattle feel like being taken to the stockyard.

Stockman's is a very large department store, with a large grocery section which carries more American foods than the usual grocery stores. Stockman's is apparently the only place you can buy peanut butter, but they didn't have Skippy super chunky and that's the kind I like. But they did have canned Campbell's soups (soups here come in packets like Knorr's and Lipton).

This was my first time at the Tirgus and it was an experience. Sister Humphrey found a pair of boots and when she offered the money (in Lats), the clerk had to run around to other "shops" to find change. The shops in the Tirgus are just little, perhaps comparable to kiosks in US.

We then ventured out to other parts of the Tirgus. Some is open markets like I've seen in the movies, with fresh produce. Most of it looked lovely, but there were pigeons above and beneath, and we live a long way from there, so buying fresh produce and getting it home on the bus didn't seem the best way to go, especially if we would have been on another crowded bus.

We did each find a purse/bag. Sister Harper had a wonderful one that had many pockets that all zipped (good for preventing pickpockets from their "craft.") I bought mine and had the exact change, which was good, because when Sister Humphrey decided to buy one also, she didn't have the exact change and the proprietor didn't have any change (at least that she was willing to admit to). Fortunately, I had what Sister Humphrey needed to make it exact. It's interesting how well we can communicate without speaking the language.

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