All Publix love is true love, but like in any romance you have to try a whole bunch. It’s necessary to embarrass yourself in front of them at least once, maybe cry a little bit and then settle down with the one whose linoleum floors get you going the most. There are 1,097 Publix stores across the Southeast, and each one houses the hearts of the people who sift through their buy-one-get-one containers at the front of the store and look for those deli ladies in aprons who give out free samples. But what happens when you have to leave the comfort of your hometown Publix for the one in your college town? Everything gets messy and you’re a heap of emotions. Here are some tips to ease the transition.
1. Avoiding people
Hometown Problem: The guy who peed his pants in the sixth grade but still feels comfortable chatting you up is now the cashier of the line you’re in. Solution: It’s time to reprioritize–figure out what you really need in your life right now and cut down items from your grocery list until you can move to the “10 Items or Fewer” line. You don’t need to hear about the latest mods he put on his car or his conspiracies about capitalism. You just need milk and eggs and eight other items of your choosing. College Problem: Your old business professor is here and is doing his shopping in spandex bike shorts. You’re extremely uncomfortable but still can’t peel your eyes away. Solution: The frozen vegetable aisle has so many options, and you should probably go stare at one of the freezer doors until you see his clearly defined body heads for the checkout lines.
2. Getting lost Hometown Problem: You turned your back for three seconds and mom has escaped you. Solution: Lucky for you, she’s not quick on her feet, and the employees here have known you since you were child and can help you locate her. College Problem: As you wait in line for a sub, you start to question if you’re really in the right major. The line’s moving quickly, and you can see the chicken tenders, but you’re lost in an existential drift trying to figuring out your life plan. Solution: Power through and order. Eat the Publix sub as soon as possible. Bad decisions get made when you’re hungry, and Publix subs have been scientifically proven to induce confidence in one’s major life decisions.
3. Purchasing decisionsHometown Problem: You want to buy the 50-piece Bagel Bites box, but your parents expect you to maintain a balanced diet. Solution: Forget the Bagel Bites. Mom is buying, which means you can now afford name-brand cereal. Appreciate. College Problem: You want to cook healthy, wholesome meals for yourself but are limited by time, money and culinary skills. Solution: See if Bagel Bites are on sale and buy in bulk.
Sometimes that first shopping trip without your mom in your usual Publix is a scary trip; the aisles are set up differently and you can’t get your Pub sub from the same deli lady you’ve known since you were 7. But, contrary to popuar belief, it’s possible to adapt and learn to love your college town Publix just as much as your hometown one, even if that entails awkward encounters with your American history TA.