Buying just a slice of bread? It’s a survival thing

“Serve!” Whether it be in the capital city or rural Jamaica, most of us can relate to making purchases at a corner shop.

Corner shops are truly the cornerstone of many communities across Jamaica.

However, many people just stop for a cold drink or a snack but do not understand that for a good portion of our population, going to the shop is not only a ritual but practically a daily occurrence due to financial constraints. You make do with what you have in your pocket to keep you going from one day to the next.

Forget about the luxury of a supermarket with all of its fancy displays and promotions. Life below the poverty line looks markedly different. For some it’s just the way of life they know so they work with it.

The list below contains some common items purchased at corner shops when you are low on cash. Nobody has the time or energy to be embarrassed because more than likely your neighbours share the same situation as you do. It is all good in the hood!

1. A squeeze of toothpaste: Walk with your toothbrush and hold it good.

2. Quarter bread: You can even get half or a slice, if you prefer.

Buying the entire loaf is a luxury; one slice of bread is a common purchase for many Jamaicans.

3. Half stick of butter: You can get also get margarine, chiffon or anchor, depending on your coins.

4. Half of a bar soap: And trust me, it cut nice and neat

Half of a bath soap or washing soap is not a unique buy for some.

5. Big gill of oil: Just walk with your bottle

6. Single diaper: You just need one to take the child on the road

7.  Single sanitary napkin: Period poverty is real!

Buying just enough red peas for the meal you’re about to cook is quite acceptable when on a tight budget.

8. Pound of chicken neck: Where do you think supermarkets got the idea?

9. Half pound of rice, cornmeal or flour: Buy what you need to cook today’s meal.

10. Big gill of peas: To go with the half pound of rice.