Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Little Things, Big Victories For This Expat.

Paying for groceries with a debit card for most is a trivial task, but to an expat making their first successful purchase with their new bank card, well, that's an indescribable feeling of euphoria my friends.  

Here's how it goes, you confidently place your debit card (chip down) in the chip machine (no swipe cards here) and the card reader says something in Dutch, but you recognize enter PIN #, then another message in Dutch appears, and it seems like the transcation will be approved. So as you stand there, palms beginning to sweat, you wait to see the cashier's reaction.  Your heart starts pounding because the line behind you continues to grow with Dutch shoppers.  Finally, the cashier utters words to you that by now you've understood to mean "Do you want a receipt?"  You nod your head and say "Yes", take the receipt/ontvangst and say "Dank u wel," puff out your chest, give your fellow shoppers behind you a confident glance and proceed walk... no, more like STRUT out of the super market.  

You've arrived expat, job well done.  

Yes, to the casual observation, I may have looked as though I had an extra spring in my step today on my daily walk home from the Albert Heijn.  You can tell by the way I use my walk I'm a shopper man, no time to talk.  (5 February 2013)

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