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3. New Experiences

When they had finished eating, they went to buy clothing for Martouf/Lantash. Since he would be staying on Earth for at least a week, they decided to get him a selection of clothes, even if he would probably be on the base most of the time. In addition, they would get some 'nice' clothes he could wear for the High School Reunion.

"Maybe you should try these too," Sam said, holding up a pair of jeans. "They're a very common type of pants..." She smiled. "I think they'll look good on you."

Martouf was holding two pairs of khaki pants - one grey, one tan - a pair of shorts, a pair of beige cargo pants, and two pairs of pants that Sam had deemed 'nice' and could be used for the reunion.

"I do not believe I need more for just this week," Martouf said. "In fact, I am sure I don't even need this much."

"It's good to have something to change between. Besides, maybe you'll visit Earth some other time?" She smiled, hopeful.

"I most certainly will!" Martouf accepted the jeans - and another pair which she handed him as well - before going to try on the clothing.

Sam looked in the shopping basket she was carrying - socks, underwear, and a couple t-shirts. He would need some long-sleeved shirts as well, and maybe a sweater or two. And a jacket. And shoes. She tried to make a mental list of it all, not wanting to forget something important.

She walked over to the fitting rooms and found the one Martouf was in. Easy, since there were few other people there. Besides, she found she could sense an energy signature from Lantash, when she stood in the corridor outside the rooms.

"Martouf?" She asked, standing outside the room he was in. "Are the pants the right size?"

"I believe so." Martouf pulled the curtain aside so she could see. He turned around in front of her. "They are somewhat more tight than the pants I am used to, but I assume this is how it is supposed to be?"

Sam just stared at him without saying anything, paying special attention to how good his ass looked in those jeans.

"Samantha? Is something wrong?" Martouf asked.

*I believe she is merely enjoying the sight,* Lantash suggested.

Sam caught herself, and blushed. "Um, sorry. There's nothing wrong. They're just like they're supposed to be." She smiled. "They, ah, they suit you very well."

Martouf smiled, pleased. "Thank you, then I shall be happy to wear them!"

He began pulling the jeans off to try on another pair, and Sam hastily - and with some regret - drew the curtain so no one would complain, should anyone pass by.

"I'll go find some shirts you can try!" She said quickly, and left to do so.

It was early evening when they had finished shopping. Sam had originally just decided to wear jeans and a shirt for the High School Reunion, but with Martouf here, she suddenly wanted to dress up.

She had spent some time finding a dress she liked while Martouf found a pair of shoes, sneakers, and sandals. That meant he had not seen what she had picked out, and she was both nervous and hopeful he would like it. While not improper, the dress was a lot sexier than what she usually wore, but hopefully not too much for the occasion.

Martouf had been looking with interest at everything they passed as they drove from the store, now and then asking questions.

"Ah, yes, you said earlier we would not be returning to the base," Martouf noticed, when Sam did not turn at the road he distinctly remembered they had travelled on earlier, when they were leaving the base.

"No, not unless you prefer to stay there. I have an extra bedroom in my house, and I thought you could use that?"

"I would much prefer that, Samantha, thank you. I would very much like to see the place where you live."

"Okay, then we need to buy a few groceries on the way. I don't think I've got a lot of fresh stuff in the refrigerator," Sam said, then added by way of explanation. "I often just stay at the base."

She turned the car onto a sideroad and soon after this they arrived at a large supermarket. Sam parked the car in the parking lot and turned to Martouf. "Do you want to stay here in the car, or do you want to come?"

"I would very much like to come with you. The marketplace... mall we were at earlier today did not have any food sellers, except for the eateries. I am curious about this supermarket."

Sam laughed. "I kind of thought you'd say that! Okay, come on, then!"

Martouf opened his seat-belt - happy he succeeded on the first try this time - and got out of the car to follow Sam.

He looked on as she took one of the shopping carts and pushed it before her into the store.

"Is that meant for transporting groceries?" Martouf asked, curiously. Then he smiled, a little sheepishly. "Lantash tells me I am a fool, and that it could be meant for nothing else."

Sam grinned. "It is meant for groceries, yes." She grabbed his arm and gave it a small squeeze. "But you're not a fool. I realize everything on Earth is different - and strange - for you."

He smiled. "Thank you, Samantha." He was soon caught up studying everything in the store with great interest.

It was early Wednesday evening, and there were few people in the supermarket, so they did not need to worry too much about anyone noticing Martouf asking strange questions or behaving oddly.

"I'm guessing you're not used to having all the different kinds of groceries at the same store, where you shop?" Sam asked.

"It is not common on most worlds, no, though there are exceptions. What intrigues me the most are that there seem to be so many different versions of the same food. That I have never seen before." He picked up two boxes of cereal. "For instance, you told me that this 'corn flakes' is a popular breakfast food. However, there are seven different boxes of it, that all seems to sell the same product. In addition, there are six more that appears almost the same. Could you explain to me how you tell the difference? Indeed, what is the difference?"

Sam laughed. "Often there isn't one - except a different brand name, and often a higher price. Different companies each try to sell the same thing, hoping people will buy their product instead of their competitors."

"Can't they all just sell the same thing? If two millers are selling flour, they would still just both call it flour. Why the need for this... confusion of different names?"

Sam was quiet for a moment. "It's... difficult to explain, actually. Not logical, I guess." She gives him a wry grin. "Just accept it as one of the Tau'ri incongruities, okay?"

Martouf nodded. "I will."

He put the cereal back and they continued through the store, with Sam picking up the things she needed to buy - and sometimes asking Martouf if he would like to try something.

It took a lot longer than it normally would, since Martouf was curious about everything, but eventually they reached the cashier, and Sam paid for the goods.

When they had loaded their groceries into the car, Sam checked on the time. "It's almost nine o'clock! What do you say we get some take-away? We can cook something at my place some other day - since you're staying here a week, at least."

"I have no complaints," Martouf said. "Just a question... what is 'take-away'?"

Sam shook her head slowly. "I keep forgetting that many of our words and concepts are foreign to you. Take-away means going to a restaurant and ordering food, but instead of sitting down to eat, you get the food to 'take-away' - back with you home, or somewhere."

"I understand," Martouf said. "Thank you for explaining."

"I was thinking pizza. You've tried pizza, right? That time when you were invited to movie night with my team..."

"Yes, I remember. Pizza sounds good. I remember liking it..." He was silent for a moment. "Lantash tells me to say that he would prefer a pizza with no... anchovies?"

Sam laughed. "Colonel O'Neill likes those, so there's usually always one pizza with that topping! Don't worry, I don't like anchovies, so I wasn't going to buy that! Get in - the pizza place I prefer is on the way to my house."

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