Saturday, October 27

Day 301: Trader Joe's

When I first moved to Los Angeles in 1990, I clearly recall seeing the signs for a specialty grocery store called Trader Joe's. One of the girls in my dance scholarship program always talked about how much she loved Trader Joe's. She would always say, "Trader Joe's has the best this" or "Trader Joe's has the best that." Two years passed before I finally made my maiden voyage to Trader Joe's. And from the minute I walked in I regretted waiting so long.

I don't know how to explain it but there is something truly magical about Trader Joe's. It is definite one of those stores that energized me the moment I walk in. I soon had a growing addiction for their products. It was love at first sight and over time I developed a strong and deep bond with Trader Joe's that has continued for many years. However, when I moved back to Texas from California, my love affair with Trader Joe's sadly ended. There were simply no Trader Joe's stores in Texas. I continued to love Trader Joe's from afar and anytime I traveled to a city that had Trader Joe's I made it a point of adding it to my list of "must see" places during my visit. And my trip home was usually made with a slightly overstuffed suitcase due to all of the wonderful Trader Joe's purchases.

Somehow I have a feeling that today will be no different, as today is a special day. I will be visiting my first Texas Trader Joe's. You see, just about three years ago my husband and I moved to Sweden from Texas. Approximately one year ago I received the bittersweet news that Trader Joe's would be opening stores in Texas. (Finally!) Were they serious?! I nearly had a heart attack when I heard this news. (Trader Joe's why have you forsaken me?) Before I moved to Texas from California I made a point of asking at every Trader Joe's I frequented if they would be opening stores in Texas. I mean, they were opening stores in various places all over the country so why not Texas? At the time I was told that, yes, Trader Joe's would be opening nationwide and within five years. This included Texas I was told so I was pretty happy. Yipee, right? Ummm. Let's see... I lived in Texas for about six and a half years before moving to Sweden and I've lived in Sweden almost three years now. Trader Joe's just recently opened in Texas. That's nearly a ten year wait, Trader Joe's. Does that sound fair? What's up with that?

Well, I can honestly say that If I wasn't so happy to have you within my occasional grasp again, I might complain about the wait that has taken almost twice as long as promised. Okay, so maybe it wasn't exactly a promise but I took it that way. I loved you and needed you in my life. But hey, that's okay. I'm fine, I can deal with it. So the minute I knew we were traveling to Texas, a visit to Trader Joe's became a priority. You may be wondering what it is that is so special about Trader Joe's. As I said before, it is really somewhat difficult to explain but here are a few items that could be found in my shopping basket from today's visit: a couple of bags of peanut butter filled pretzels, oatmeal and tea tree oil soaps, a giant one pound plus chocolate bar, chocolate covered orange jellies for my mom, spiced cider, cracked wheat sourdough bread, vegetarian Italian sausage, wine, a wide assortment of other treats and a brand new re-useable Trader Joe's shopping bag. Sigh. Trader Joe's, I love you and I have missed you so much. When do you suppose you'll be opening in Stockholm?

Trader Joe's in the old Alabama theater in Houston, Texas.
It was a chilly day today in Texas but look at that gorgeous clear blue sky.


  1. so excited that Trader Joe's is finally in Texas. We're getting one in SA in a few days. I cant wait.

    1. Isn't it awesome??!!! Congrats on your SA location. :-D