Friday, August 12, 2011

Shopping in Atyrau

As I have said before, one of the main attractions of the Ardager building for Sandra is that it is next to a shopping mall (don't think North American mall!) which is home to the Pamctop (Ram Store) supermarket, which is the most western of the several supermarkets in Atyrau.  At the other end of the shopping spectrum are the markets, which are indoor and outdoor, at least in summer, and which have a combination of stalls and little shops, selling everything from food to plumbing and electrical equipment, including of course shoes and clothes, kitchen and household appliances and jewellery.

Now, following the principle of a picture being worth a thousand words, I should be giving you a picture tour of these places.  However the supermarkets and large retailers do not allow photographs to be taken.  Yesterday I was caught about to take a picture in an electrical store and security made be delete the picture I had already taken of the outside of the shop.  It is hard to argue with no Russian.  I have however sneaked some pictures, which are not very good as I have to conceal the camera and cannot easily stop and focus!

Ardager Shopping Mall

Ram Store is on the first floor so one goes up on the moving walkway which is very odd as the railing doesn't move

The moving walkway, a cosmetics booth and a shoe repair shop (cobbler, I suppose)

This is the downward walkway, it is quite slippery

The news stand outside Ram Store

Ram Store entrace.  The cupboards where one has to leave ones bags and the security guard

Ram Store!

 Here Sandra is checking out the instructions which are in two languages, Russian and Kazakh.  Ram Store is Turkish owned and a lot of the produce is imported from Turkey so sometimes there are also Turkish contents lists and instructions as well.  Sandra is alright with some of the Russian, but none of it helps me very much.

 These are the aisles of Ram Store.

It is possible to take pictures in the markets, but they do not really like it and it is a bit voyeuristic, and feels rather exploitative. Still, I have some photos of Rahat Market below.

The market is a combination of little stores in corridors (on the left) and market stalls inside and outside, like those on the right.  As you can see in the picture below the produce is fairly good, but the range is limited.  Sometimes there are grape fruits everywhere then they suddenly disappear for a few days.  Currently there are tomatoes but no cherry tomatoes.  Sandra likes to take these small tomatoes to work to snack on!

On the left, meat and on the right wristwatches.  Something for everyone.
I will be trying to get more pictures of shops and I will add them as I get them.

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