Sunday, June 19, 2005


Reflections on my travels: the three best food bons mots

My five-plus weeks abroad is winding down to the last few days. Tomorrow we head to Amsterdam for a two-day, three-night stay, flying home Thursday.

Having been abroad for over a month, and thinking deeply about my home, the loved ones I will be seeing soon again, and all that junk, it is a time for reflection. And a time for sharing.

Here, for instance, I will share with you the three very best things that were said over food between B and me.

1. "I want to get naked and roll around in this."

This was B commenting on the very nice cheese board offered to us at the end of our fancy dinner in Thionville, France. In the U.S., you never hear anyone say, as you're stuffing yourself with meat in heavy, delicious sauces, "save room for cheese!" But we did, and unable to choose among the seven delectable cheeses displayed on the cart in front of us, we tried one of each.

2. "Now we're finally getting somewhere."

Said by B about a piece of chocolate-cherry cake in Berlin. I always thought Germany was supposed to be the land of cake. If there was one big disappointment I had on this really great time abroad, it was the dessert baking in Germany. Maybe I didn't hit the right regions, but I found that in a given town all the bakeries would offer the same assortment of bready sweet rolls, cheesecake and squares weighted down with heavy fruit suspended in stuff like jello. But for the sausages, roasted pork shanks and fabulous chocolate bars, I might have lost weight!

I think I said something incredibly funny in response to B, but it came out indistinct because my mouth was full of chocolate cherry cake.

3. "One more hair and I'll have to stop eating this."

Said by me, just this evening, at our restaurant in Brussels. They have a bit of an issue around cleanliness in this otherwise charming town. (I'll explain later.) I'd found the second one when this comment came out.


Maybe you were fooled by that "Chrononauts" card: "Germans Eat Chocolate Cake"?

Those are terrific lines of dialog, though. And there's a fair chance of them magically appearing in a short story written by someone you might know...

(Crossing Brussels off the travel list)
Three hairs in your food is your limit? Well, at least you're not squeamish.
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