Fino Cambur

Cool Bananas

Refined Yet Hard-to-Find

Who said sugar is not a drug? I was unsuccessfully looking for some milk in the local government-run grocery store, Bicentenario, when I almost got caught in an impromptu cola. This one was inspired by the arrival of a pallet of sugar. I didn’t quite fear for my life but I did have to side-step quickly behind an end-cap from where I could safely snap these photos. Count yourself lucky to be able to see this cola phenomenon in its early stages of formation. I know I do.

Immediately below, note the common bewildered look on the faces of those trying to figure out where the beginning of the line is.


It’s a difficult dilemma — do I stay where I am and carry what I can in my arms, or do I give up my spot for a cart, which would carry more, but put me back several spots in line? And in this photo, note the shopping carts, abandoned in favor of the hope of snagging some white, refined sweet-sweet.


The other highly refined and hard to find product in great demand is white wheat flour. It’s a fine time to be gluten-free in Caracas. At one local bakery, this sign was posted at strategic spots around the counters.


“Attention. Our distinguished clientele are informed that for reasons outside our control, we find ourselves needing to restrict the quantity of bread products, so that we may be able to provide for the greatest number of people. Once we have recuperated our inventory of wheat flour we will return to business as usual. Forgive the inconveniences this may have caused.”

Really, the only inconvenience was caused by the fact that there was no cola at the bread      counter. People kept cutting me in the line that didn’t exist. Go figure.

2 comments on “Refined Yet Hard-to-Find

  1. Kris
    February 22, 2013

    I was there yesterday looking for eggs and luckily just as I arrived they were putting out some new cartons. You’re right, if ever there was a good time to start a gluten-free diet it would be now in Venezuela. A little outside motivation to get the ball rolling.

    Personally I was more worried about the toilet paper shortage in January – good thing that was short-lived. And luckily there is still amazing papaya and the mangoes are coming back strong these days. Grocery shopping in Caracas has become my weekly place of luck and adventure, elation and disappointment. Clearly I need to get out a bit more.

    • msteinross
      February 22, 2013

      Yes, Kris. I agree. Sometimes the weekend market trips feel like the highlight of my week. It brings out my hunter instincts!

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This entry was posted on February 22, 2013 by in Michael and tagged .

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I'm a mom to an amazing little boy, wife to a supportive and adventurous husband, teacher in an international community, and lover of gardening, reading, cooking shows, lattes, and sharing.

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