We all have a few in the immediate vicinity of our home, but we often miss them - attracted by the aggressive offers of large chains. However, some of them are much more than places to shop for basic food and household items. They are like a real center of neighborhood life, where in addition to a full bag, one always comes out with a lot of new information. Sometimes it’s just neighborhood gossip, but other times - interesting facts from history, geography, and even the political life of our country.
In fact, the inspiration for today's article came from a small shop in one of the villages near Plovdiv. There the owner has taught music abroad for many years and today he welcomes all his clients not only with a big smile, but also with a music accompaniment. Is there anything more enchanting than choosing the necessary everyday products to the sounds of a classical symphony!? In addition to gentle tones, the "rural" supermarket fascinates with a different aphorism every day. The owner himself says that he selects them from the internet depending on the events of the day and as we recently read on the board in front: "Snow is falling all around, there’s wine, let it snow"
Especially in the days after 1989, this type of small neighborhood shops had appeared on the site of a number of garages under blocks of flats and condominiums. Back then there were no chains like Metro, Kaufland and Billa and we all went there for a carton of milk and half a loaf of bread at any time of the day. Gradually, their flow shifted, because even their space doesn’t allow this huge variety, to which we are accustomed today in hypermarkets.
But what can never be replaced is the personal attitude of the seller behind the counter. Whether to ask you a simple "how are you, neighbor" or to offer you something that just got in, the recommendation and the story are always there. It’s not strange that they greet you by name and even know what you prefer ????
Over the years, many of these types of sites have become social gatherings, in front of which the local jokesters from the area relax on foot with beer in hand. Even with the lockdown, they turned out to be one of the small places where people consumed the drinks they bought even on foot. Well, the tables have been raised, but we have also encountered all sorts of innovations such as a bench to rest in front or a side door to a secret courtyard. Although the prices in them are traditionally a bit higher, especially if they are around the clock, in front of some well-known shops in the neighborhoods, there are always queues and flow.
Unfortunately, according to a number of data, their number is rapidly declining every year, mainly due to the competition of the chains, and recently also due to the increase in the volume of online sales in the sector. That is why with this article we address with a great deal of nostalgia those who have already closed and for many years fed the whole family, busy from morning to night behind the counter. Along with the coronavirus their sole purpose is to stay, so we urge you not to miss them next time you go to the usual weekend shopping. Look around your home you and you will surely find the place where you will always be greeted with a smile and as the most special guest!
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