The day the pack mule crossed the border

A few weeks ago, in anticipation of Michael’s trip to the US, I made a few online purchases and had them sent to a friend in New Jersey.  A few might possibly be more like thirty or so, but that’s not important.  What is important is that my husband had to bring it all home with him.  Before he left we had a brief and somewhat distracted conversation about how many suitcases he should take with him.  My vote was for as many as humanly possible, his was for two.  I guarantee he regrets that decision.

A man carrying a barbecue and two suitcases double his body weight is not inconspicuous.  His suitcases were inspected and receipts were requested, but he sailed through customs relatively quickly without a fine.  I think the Swiss officials were in awe of the fact that someone would actually bring a grill, grill stand, copious amounts of Secret deodorant, a giant sized bottle of vanilla extract, women’s boots, abercrombie tshirts, seven DVD’s and People magazine (the Twilight Saga issue, if you must know) across the ocean.  That is the short version of the list.  I won’t even get into the lawn care products, curtains and hand towels.

The obvious question is why?  Why would someone feel the need to buy a bag of Nestle chocolate chips the size of a small animal, and lug it to Europe?  Surely they have towels and barbecues and chocolate(!) in Switzerland.  The answer to this is yes, they do have all of these things in Switzerland.  And they cost about double what we pay at home.  And they come in much smaller sizes.  And you have to go to about ten different stores to find everything on that list, and pay for parking, and squeeze into an impossibly small parking spot, and pay for the bag in which to place your teeny tiny overpriced purchase.

Instead, I ordered online, sent Michael to Target, paid half, got more and now have a grill and some cute clothes to wear while cooking on it.  Note to self: insist on one more suitcase next time.

Kimberly

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  • deb

    I can’t believe your husband actually went through with this.!!

  • I entered this site by chance, but I found very interesting. A greeting to all the people who visit this page.

  • Mike is a beyond a good husband!

  • Been there, done that! To the uninitiated it seem rather crazy! To the rest of us, perfectly sane and reasonable. Somehow husbands who move their families around the world also know that means lugging strange and wonderful things for them!

  • shannon

    I found your blog through (in)courage. Love this post! We’ve lived overseas for 10 years (4 countries) and I totally get you on the shopping when you go back to the states. I also hoard. Weird stuff like mascara, peanut butter and socks. Your husband’s great for carrying it all back with him!

  • I just stumbled upon your blog and thought your write-up on importing American goods was hilarious! It reminded me of the time when we lived in the US and had coerced our dear friends to smuggle everything from Bratwurst to Rivella to Ovomaltine into the US!

    Good times.