If you’ve grown tired of buying sushi at the mall, testing your luck at shawarma stands, or buying kvass from street vendors, you could always just shop at a grocery store. For some reason, people in the west are under the impression that modern conveniences like grocery stores don’t exist in Russia and that most people in the country rely on markets and street vendors that I mentioned in my previous post. Not only is this entirely untrue, but you can find just about anything in a Russian grocery store that you could find in a western one (the exception being peanut butter). Since none of us had regular access to a vehicle, this post will be based primarily on the family grocery store located close to our dorm. The grocery store we shopped at was so well supplied, that I was actually disappointed by how convenient it was. It took a little of the fun out of being in a foreign country. To top it all off, one of the Russian students from our exchange program state that it was just a decent grocery store. That’s not to say that things aren’t different. Whatever you buy, unless it’s supposed to last, it will go bad in about a day or two as Russian products aren’t loaded with preservatives. So if you buy a loaf of bread, you should plan on finishing it that day or refrigerate it. The way eggs are stored my shock you, as you can buy them unrefrigerated in Russia. They’re also much more difficult to crack, so if you want to make an omelet, be prepared to use some elbow grease. Quite a lot of food is self-served which I was taken aback by. I personally don’t like the concept of self-service in a grocery store, but you are free to use these services at your own leisure. If you feel like staying in one night and cooking for yourself or that you need to start budgeting, then by all means, go shopping for groceries!