Yes, today it’s a trip down Memory Lane for me and I’m thinking particularly about Hyde Park supermarket.
The first time I went there was when I had only lived in Fort Lauderdale for a few weeks. I went to a barbecue one Sunday at a home on the Las Olas Isles. Everyone there was British, so it was a rather boozy affair and we decided that we needed more.
“No problem” said my host and fired up his boat “You coming?” How could I resist? Having just arrived recently from England, the idea of going to the grocery store by boat was irresistible. The trip probably took three quarters of an hour more than it would have done by car but, I thought, this is the life.
As soon as I possibly could, I moved to the Las Olas Isles too and Hyde Park became my local grocery store. And I loved it. The bread section – most of the bread, I’m sure, was from Gran Forno. You could (if you’re not a veggie) select your own live lobster. You could (and I often did) select your bottle of wine and put it in the wine cooler. By collecting it just before you checked out, you’d have perfectly chilled wine by the time you got home. And it was a place where ‘everyone knows your name’.
My favorite memory involves the fact that they often used to play very appropriate 1950s music. One day, when shopping, an elderly guy, a checkout bagger, just grabbed my hand as I was perusing the fresh produce and proceeded to do a rock n roll jive dance with me. I was hopeless. He was brilliant.
Now that was a grocery store.