I needed to go grocery shopping. The list was simple enough, and I was looking forward to the experience of walking through the neighborhood to see what was what. I got most of the stuff I needed, but didn’t have any luck with the ham. There was no meat counter and all the packaged meat in the cooler didn’t really look like ham, even though the labels all said schwein. So I decided to check out one of the two stores I passed on the way to this one.

The second store had a meat counter full of sausages. The rest of the meat and fish were in a cooler, just like the first place. By this time I had been out almost an hour and a half and had walked two kilometers. But I decided to try the third store.

The third grocery store was in a basement. In spite of its location it was a good size and had long aisles (like home). In the rear was a full-sized meat and fish counter with two people behind it. I walked up and started looking. They had prosciutto. They had pork belly. Bacon. And five varieties of fully cooked ham. When the young man behind the counter came up to ask me if he could help I asked him if he spoke English. He laughed and said not much, but that he’d try.

Me:  “What kind of ham is this?”

Him:  “Um, this is schwein with pepper.”

Me:  “And this one?”

Him:  “ . . . this is  . . . I do not know how to say it.”

Me:  “What about this one?”

Him:  “Mmm . . . NORMAL HAM!”

Perfect! Mission accomplished! Buying ham never felt so good.

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