By VICTOR E. SASSON
I planned to shop for food at Trader Joe's and Costco Wholesale on Tuesday, but my iPhone started giving me trouble right away.
When I tried to use the phone's camera at the Paramus Trader Joe's on Route 17, the screen was black.
I knew I was eligible for an upgrade in late January, so I drove to the Verizon store in the southbound lanes.
But before going inside, I called the wireless kiosk at Costco Wholesale in Teterboro.
I learned I could get a new, bigger iPhone, a free portable battery with flashlight, and a $100 cash card.
I then went inside the Verizon store, where the salesman said he couldn't match the offer.
At Costco, I paid the tax, $59.50, and agreed to pay $10 a month for two years for an iPhone 6s Plus with a lot more memory than my old iPhone 5s.
I got to the Teterboro Costco around 2:30 in the afternoon, and had my choice of parking spots near or far away from the entrance (Teterboro Landing shopping center off of Route 46).
Inside the store, only one other customer was ahead of me at the wireless kiosk.
After my phone was activated, I did my planned food shopping.
Costco sells one of my favorites, fresh wild-caught Atlantic Cod from Iceland for $7.99 a pound.
At home, in a large covered pan, I heated up 365 Everyday Value Roasted Salsa Verde from Whole Foods Market, adding fresh juice from one lime.
I cut up the skinless and boneless fillet into serving pieces, and seasoned them with sea salt and crushed Aleppo pepper.
When the salsa began to boil, I put the pieces in the pan in a single layer and covered them.
Depending on the thickness, the pieces were ready in 5 minutes to 7 minutes, and continued cooking in the covered pan when I turned off the fire.
I ate my first portion over leftover organic quinoa with organic diced tomatoes, both from Costco; organic chickpeas and whole garlic cloves.
I also had a salad of Earthbound Farm Organic Spring Mix ($4.29 a pound at Costco), dressed with Kirkland Signature Organic Extra-Virgin Olive Oil and balsamic vinegar.
Fresh Atlantic Cod poached in Roasted Salsa Verde over organic quinoa with organic chickpeas, organic diced tomatoes and whole garlic cloves.
Free-range organic eggs
At the Teterboro Costco, you can find free-range brown eggs, but the only organic ones are sold under the Kirkland Signature house label (two dozen for $6.99).
I've looked for large brown organic eggs at that price ($3.50 a dozen) in ShopRite and H Mart without success.
I also picked up a 2-liter container of Kirkland Signature Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil for $13.29 with a $1.50 instant coupon or about $6.65 a liter.
Two organic eggs from Costco Wholesale with organic quinoa and sauteed spinach.
Oatmeal with blueberries and organic bananas from Costco Wholesale. Blueberries from Chile were $4.99 for 18 ounces and 3 pounds of organic bananas were $1.99.
Trader Joe's 100% juices
Earlier at Trader Joe's on Route 17 north in Paramus, I picked up a 3-pound bag of Organic Sweet Potatoes for $4.49 or about $1.50 a pound.
A 5-pound bag of the same Organic Sweet Potatoes was available during the holidays for about $1 a pound, but that has been discontinued.
I also picked up 64-ounce bottles of several 100% juice blends with no added sugar:
Trader Joe's Green Plant, Low Sodium Garden Patch, Heart of Darkness Mango Passionfruit and Carrot Tropical Blend.
Each was $3.49 or $3.99.
A 32-ounce container of Trader Joe's 3-in-1 Shampoo, Conditioner and Body Wash was $7.99.