Grocery Shopping in Cheyenne in the Coronavirus Era
For many people, this past Friday, the 13th was a payday. It was also another day of uncertainty in the world with Coronavirus concerns surrounding us. I went grocery shopping last night and here was my experience.
On a snowy and windy night and Cheyenne at approximately 8:45 p.m., I ventured to the south Walmart Supercenter in Cheyenne to stock up on groceries, nothing more than I would normally purchase during a grocery store stop. The roads were not-so-great, so weather conditions may have had to do with this experience as well. Also, at the time I'm writing this, it's been about 13 hours since, so shelves may have very well been restocked since then.
The first thing I noticed when I walked through the door was how not-so-busy it was. Again, maybe that could've been a weather thing, or people just not wanting to be out for health concerns, aka, social distancing. But as I walked through the fruit section of the store, I noticed it was all gone. Rows of boxes were completely empty.
I proceeded to the frozen food section as I tend to purchase TV dinners routinely. Probably about 60 percent of the entire aisle had been cleared out, aside from the brand of TV dinners I typically enjoy. Somehow I lucked out and stocked up on the 'normal' amount I typically purchase, which would be as many as I'd normally purchase until next payday. I emphasize normal, because I'm not someone who 'panic buys'. I'll get to more on that in a minute.
Then I went over to the aisle where I typically get condiments. One thing definitely through me for a loop when the brand of Chipotle-Mayo sauce was no where to be found. This worried me since I put that on a lot of stuff. I went further down the aisle towards the regular Mayo and the usual inventory was all there intact. And I found a different brand of Chipotle-Mayo to use, despite the fact it was definitely a more expensive brand. No big deal, I have Chipotle-Mayo, so everything is right with the world again.
Next, was the bread aisle. Everything was gone. There were no loafs of bread to be found of any brand whatsoever, except for a select few of the Gluten-free stuff, but that's not what I'm getting. The typical Honey Wheat bread I buy wasn't there. However, to me, bread can be interchangeable with hamburger buns. Nope, that wasn't there either. However, I found a package of Pretzel Bread, which is delicious by the way, and then I found Italian Sandwich Rolls, which are always amazing, so score, I have bread.
Then I went back to the frozen foods as I realize I need my source of protein that I typically put on the bread with the Chipotle Mayo and almost all was gone. Probably about 90 percent. Until I found a bag of Tyson Spicy Chicken Patties, which was exactly what I was looking for. It might've been the last package. I want to say there was one or two more packs, but I was just so excited to find that, so boom, I have my sandwiches I typically make. I also went over near the frozen pizza section. That was about 50 percent cleared out, which is no big deal, since I typically don't purchase frozen pizza, but I wanted one thing, Lean Pockets (the Pepperoni kind). Somehow, those had been untouched and were in great supply.
I then went to the packaged lunch meat section as I usually grab a pack of ham and/or turkey. Although depleted and probably about 65-75 percent gone, I found the ham I normally purchase. Then it was over to the chips aisle (I eat a lot of chips). ALL THE CHIPS WERE THERE. I grabbed my normal allotment and was quite pleased that the chip aisle looked normal.
From there, I headed over to the cheese. At first, I was worried since the packaged cheese selection seemed to be depleted aside from a select few. Next to that were several empty boxes, which I feared was the sliced cheese that I normally stock up on (I also eat a lot of cheese. It's a great diet.) However, I forgot that the sliced cheese is one section over and it looked like about 50 percent was still there.
Next, it was over to the beverage section. I would say a good 80 percent of the orange juice was completely gone. Somehow, I found the kind I typically get, so I lucked out there. Then, time to get milk, and maybe some chocolate milk. The chocolate milk was also about 80 percent gone, but I found that. The milk had plenty of choices. I would say that only about 20 percent was gone, which is an interesting ratio of regular milk to chocolate milk supply.
At this point, I just want to check to see about one more thing, and that's fruit snacks. Yes, I love fruit snacks, so I had to check it out. There was probably about 60 percent of the fruit snacks gone, but again, somehow I found what I typically purchase.
Oh, and I did pass the toilet paper aisle. Luckily, I was not in need of that, but that aisle was completely bare of any toilet paper. I mean, c'mon people, really? Why? Can we please agree to stop 'panic buying' toilet paper? Of all things, why that? No one is winning an award for having the largest supply of toilet paper.
By the time I headed to the self-checkout line, there were no lines. No wait whatsoever. In fact, there were open self-checkouts all around me at approximately 9:15 p.m.
This a stark contrast as to what other cities are having to go through. There have been reports of fights breaking out in grocery stores, long lines out the door, and even guns being pulled on others for items. Everyone I encountered at the store was polite and respectful. No one was contesting anyone for other items, even when there was a shortage of items on the shelves. It was a positive experience overall. We can only hope that sort of thing continues and I have no doubt that it will in Cheyenne. Keep continuing to be good to each other in this tough time we're all experiencing in the world and please stop 'panic buying' toilet paper.