WTF Weds: Ed 005 GABC…du hasst mich?

2 02 2011

I am currently drowning in a figurative sea of loneliness.

Soooo there I was, happily walking my ass over to the commissary to pick up a lovely dinner by way of cold-cut sub, Lays cheddar crisps, and nectarines. You see, there are very few things I would go as far to say that I “love” or “need” here in this island Kingdom. The commissary deli is one of them. They are the source of at least 7 meals a week for me. The deli here makes the most delectable sammiches. (Although, I must say it is in no way shape or form comparative to Junior’s General store sammies–those are created with love, sweat, and tears-minus the sweat/tears part) Okay, so there I was rolling up on the deli counter, and there appeared to be a white plastic draped across all of the shelves/display cases…so as to appear as though they were closed. As I got even closer, I noticed a small little sign that said “Great American Bagel Company coming soon!” Uh, WHAT THE FUCK. Seriously? No notice, no “oh, by the way”, no….mention of our beloved deli being replaced bo GABC?? Suddenly, my whole world had changed. I stood there for a few moments in disbelief. Made my way around to the side of the display case where I could see into the shelves. Empty. I’m not talkin no one-or-two shelf display of assored meats ripe for the slicing. No, this is about four glass cases, stacked deep, three shelves high of any kind of deli meat that you could dream of. I think they had about 9 kinds of ham. Now, in a country that doesn’t allow pork, that’s beyond amazing. Now, instead of my mouth watering at the sight of those deli cases, as it has since my very first trip there, it was filled with a bad taste and disgust. I can’t believe they would just shut it down.

I had to get to the bottom of this.

After I meandered around the commissary, up and down every aisle (which I normally do not allow myself this luxury, as I tend to have a sticky finger and empty stomach here and there and somehow my cart is filled with items of unneeded randomness)…I ventured over to my produce man. He has also been kind to me through the years. We are buddies, you could say. Though he only knows a very few select words in english, we do seem to communicate quite well with hand gestures, facial expressions, and lots of invisible question marks above our heads. He knows just what I want when I am over there (just how the deli men knew just what I wanted before I even got up to the glass case filled with meats-galore..and they had it prepared for me before I could open my mouth to say- turkey, lettuce, guacamole on wheat please!). Back to produce- he would bag grapes, nectarines, or bananas for me. I’m a pretty simple gal. But he encourages me from time to time to try new things. He’ll suggest perhaps a fresh mango from Thailand, or a new type of tomato they got from India. He’s a good produce man. ANYHOW, on this particular eve I was torn between nectarines and some fresh-looking apples. I got both and meandered over to the scale so he could bag em up for me. And I inquired about the deli. He relayed that they had closed down the day before without ANY notice to anyone..and that the GABC will be opening there in two days. (Or at least this was the gist that I got from his partial english and disappointed facial expressions.) Ugh! Then he said that the workers will no longer be on base working there or anywhere. Super sad since they were very good at their job, and they seemed to really enjoy conversing with us service folks. I mean, I could think of better things I would like to be doing than slicing meat, but they seemed to legitimately enjoy it. And always with a smile on their faces. I ushered a thank-you, and headed to the register…after picking up a few more items that I did not need nor did they match with anything that was already in my basket… hoping one of these items would give me a warm heart. I knew there was more to the story and I was going to find out what really happened. Eventually word gets around and everyone and their mother knows the real story..or the pseudo-RUMINT (rumor intelligence) story.

SO, I head back up to work and begin unloading my various edibles and sundries.  I see one of my supervisors from over the cubicle and mention the fact the deli was closed. He was as taken back as I was, though he eats there much less. It is a huge money-maker for the commissary, nearly ever day there is a line with several people winding clear past the bookstands. He said that they have just recently began to get tested by the FDA-esque people here on base. I guess medical has called in specialists to go around base and ensure that the food-places are doing their jobs with sanitizing and cleanliness. After failing said test, they have decided to close down the deli. Now, I would really like to believe this, but as paranoid as people are, I really doubt that it’s a deli with cold cuts that make you sick around here. It is 99% more likely that it is these nasty people who don’t wash their hands afer the bathroom, that don’t clean themselves after touching various door handles and objects around base. And then they touch their face, somewhere on their body, desks, other people, and then they eat with those grubby fingers..close to their mouth. Ugh, just gross. And our dear deli gets the blame. After nearly two years here I have yet to trace an illness back to the deli at the commissary. Sad. Just sad.

Goodbye little deli men, goodbye yummy sandwiches. I will miss you always.

A note to the noobies: GABC, you better come in with guns blazin, and some damn good sammies if you want my support.

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4 responses

2 02 2011
Sis

Nothing. And I mean NOTHING stacks up to Juniors sammies 🙂

2 02 2011
bloodlovehopeluststeam

I know! and now he’s closed…sad day but WELL earned.

4 02 2011
pattiskitchen

I don’t think that I’ll be patronizing the GABC on base. I hope the NEX loses TONS of money. that is just unacceptable! And with no warning!! I kinda wonder what they did with all the leftover deli meat. I would buy the ham and prosciutto off of them and slice it myself! I’m about as disappointed as you are. 😦

5 02 2011
bloodlovehopeluststeam

Well, I’m glad you bring it up, because I was in the NEX yesterday and asked the check-out lady what was up with it. She says it will be opening the 2nd week in FEB, and it will be the SAME price if not cheaper. That was the deal to let them come in and take over. The other deli failed heath inspection too many times and were booted. So it’s no the NEX’s fault… I feel a little better about it…

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