by VEP student Jerry Ai, tutored by Fred Crotchfelt
Tutor-student field trips do not have to be long or expensive. There are many free opportunities right in the community, like a trip to Wegman’s grocery store.
A couple weeks ago my English tutor, Fred, suggested that we could spend some time at Wegman’s instead of our regular English class in a meeting room of his church. Wegman’s at Downingtown,PA is one of the largest grocery stores in Chester county. The store provides not only daily food but also has a Pharmacy and a Market Cafe. For me Wegman’s is the place where I get fresh fruits and organic milk.
On Monday, Fred and I started our Wegman’s tour from the cafeteria. Since it was about time for lunch we needed to find something for lunch. We explored the food bar and found a lot of options from oriental to Italian foods, such as dumplings, fried rice, pizza and fresh salad. They all looked delicious! Fred wanted to have a sandwich so he asked a Wegman’s lady behind counter where we could find a sandwich. She showed us where we could find a fresh made sandwich. We walked to the sandwich place and another Wegman’s lady made a tuna wrap for Fred. She asked Fred what he wants in the tuna wrap, such as lettuce, onion and etc. Both ladies were friendly when we spoke with them.
After our lunch time we started walking around in the store. I visit this store almost once every week for quick food shopping and never had a chance to explore which I always wanted to try. We found couscous at the natural food section. I had couscous once at a restaurant and loved it every much. It was time to get a bag and cook my own couscous! I like this section because I can not only find something healthy but also get to learn some new ideas. We found mac and cheese when we passed by a shelf with a bunch of boxed food. Fred told me mac and cheese tastes good and his grand children love it. I grabbed one box and want to cook it at home sometime.
It was about two hours we stayed at this store. Fred answered a lot of questions when I found something new and asked him what that is. We talked about cooking and food. We had a good time and I bought the bag of couscous and a box of mac and cheese! This kind of class helps me to better understand America and learn more and more about American life. And that is the value of my experience with the Volunteer English Program.