Last month, Diane over at Oui in France wrote a piece about shopping carts, or shopping trolleys, as they’re called in Australia. I realised that this has become part of normal life here in Melbourne, but it’s something I never did until I came here.
In Melbourne, shopping trolleys refers to two things. One is the kind of shopping cart provided by supermarkets and stores like Target and Kmart. You use them to hold your items until you check out. Diane and I are talking about a second kind of trolley, a smaller, personal trolley that is commonly used in both Paris and Melbourne. In cities where walking is commonplace, people use these to carry their groceries home. When I first saw them, I reacted just as Diane, and asked the very same question she posed, “Are these shopping trolleys granny chic or just granny?”
When I lived in Miami, I went to the supermarket every Sunday morning with my sister and our mother. We used the supermarket’s big shopping cart to hold our items. At the check-out, our items were transferred into bags, which were then carried the car, and we drove home. Here in Melbourne, I don’t have a car. Most of the time, Theo drives us both the market and we do the shopping together. Other times, I do it alone, and I use a shopping trolley.
There are two ways in which I see people using their trolleys. One is to use the trolley for the shopping as well as carrying your groceries home. People load the groceries right in, out for check-out, and back in again, sans bags. I don’t like this method. I prefer the wire type of trolley, like the blue one pictured above, which flattens, and I can place it in a larger supermarket trolley. I like my groceries bagged and then I place them in my trolley.
I do feel a bit like an ole lady when I drag my shopping trolley behind me, but it’s practical. It beats carrying heavy bags. I draw the line at taking it to the mall, however. I see some women using them at the mall to carry their clothing purchases. Practical, I know, but still granny.