Welcomed in a land of milk and honey

Pomegranates for $1.19 each.

Imagine that! I’d never eaten a pomegranate until a decade ago when my friend Jill served me a Bon Appetite salad topped with the ruby seeds of a pomegranate. Now, I can buy them at a supermarket 15 miles from my home for the price of fine apples.

I was greeted no fewer than four times at this particular grocery, known for its produce section and deli. A man noticed the confusion on my face and took the initiative to direct me to the macaroni and cheese. I was among friends, which is not the way I felt when I stopped at the village market less than a mile from my home. I say felt in the past tense because I’ve been boycotting the place since March when I stopped in for strawberries and milk and I was not greeted once — not one word was uttered to me the entire time I shopped, not even “thank you.” The strawberries that day, by the way, should have been in the garbage, not in the fresh fruit display. And pomegranates? Are you kidding? Never.

But today I found dried figs and leeks, and in the grocery section, a new ready-to-eat soup made with coconut milk and shiitake mushrooms. Oh, the selection!

I felt like I was in a familiar land where they spoke my language and packaged up some strange amalgamation called “lunch meat ends” for $1.79 a pound.

And this ancient fruit originating in the Middle East I learned is now grown in California. And shipped, practically to my doorstep, for my delight and consumption.

Oh, joy!

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