|I appreciate the picture, but you forgot the hot peppers
Earlier this week I sent out a message; actually, it was a plea from a distant desert island. I wanted a Jimmy John's Vito sandwich (#5) with hot peppers and a little mayo. It was so simple, I expected to be flooded with sandwiches – – but alas I only received one and that one was only a picture. It bordered on cruelty, except I probably would've done the same if places had been reversed.
Anyway, with the exception of requesting some real movie theater popcorn from my son, in March 2012, which I still have not received, I have not been dead-ended in my quest for just about anything.
Being a military brat and prior Air Force, I knew what to expect from a Base Exchange (BX or PX or AAFES). If you consider what their mission is and the small square footage that they try to do it in -- what they do is amazing. There is a wide variety of anything to a degree. You won't find everything you want there but you can find most of what you need there. Those things you can't find, you have to rely on friends and family back in the United States, try to figure out the Arabic conversion for what you need or order it via mail.
I've already mentioned how responsive my friends and family are to a sandwich request. Truthfully, everyone has been really great and offered to send me anything I needed whenever I've mentioned I need. I've been able to be fairly self-sufficient but for those times when I'm not, I appreciate my family stepping up.
The Internet has changed the degree of difficulty in dealing with an overseas assignment. I can reach out and touch just about any major retailer in the United States and have them send me whatever I need if they have it in stock and if they will mail to an APO. Two heroes at doing this that are worthy of mention are Amazon.com and Target.
I have never run into anything that Target stocked that they would not mail to me. That includes a 42 inch Vizio TV. They are awesome and they have my loyalty when I return to the United States. Until then please patronize them on my behalf.
Amazon.com is also a major-league hero. I thought it was just me until I saw them bringing in a palette of mail one day and at least 4/5s of the boxes on the palette had an Amazon logo. I am not the only one that relies on them as a lifeline. I can order something from Amazon today and I will get it in about four weekdays. The only time that wasn't true was during Christmas when mail volume was way up. I have bought lots of stuff from them from food, to computer parts, software, books, and sundries. AMAZON ROCKS!
The stores here run the gamut from French and English versions of Wal-Mart (Lulu and Carrefour)to corner stores run by families. Some products are the same as the American version, just with an Arabic label. In some instances I've tried some new things that have worked out very well. I did notice that there's a Sears about open at one of the shopping centers near where I live, I wonder if they will show Martha Stewart wearing an Abiya in their ads.
As far as instant appetite gratification goes, Kuwait has a wide abundance of American fast and franchise food. Not all of it tastes the same because no pork is allowed – – so anything that involves bacon is a nonstarter. They also lack two things I really would love to have here but at least one that I know would have to go through major changes just to open: Waffle House and Jimmy John's.
Until then, have a #5 for me and follow it up with some hash browns: covered, mothered, scattered and diced.
Pix of the Week
Not sure I want to know what a "Security probing" is.