So after three plus months in London, we’re winding things down and getting ready to return to the America, Land of the Free, and Unlimited Semi-Automatic Weapons, With Extra-Large Capacity Magazines. Just for varmint hunting.
We were discussing the other day what we missed from the good ol’ US of A and came up with a list. Well, two lists, because if one list is good, two are _________. Please fill in the blank yourself, I’m not going to do all the work for you.
Anyway, List One – Things We Miss:
- Toast tongs. It’s amazing how much we miss these things. After three months of sticking forks, knives and easily scorched fingers in toasters, we’ve come to the firm conclusion that before we travel again, we’re going to get a special pair of travel toast tongs.
- JIF peanut butter. Mary misses this a bit, especially since all the peanut butter over here is similar to organic, though they call it natural. Natural (organic) apparently means that it has oil on top, and lacks vital American ingredients like sugar, salt and some more sugar.
- Electrical outlets in the bathrooms. It would be nice to be able to recharge our electric toothbrushes in more salubrious surroundings than the kitchen.
And that’s pretty much it.
Things We Will Miss Once We’re Back in The USA:
- Pubs. And bitter. And pubs serving bitter. Which they all do of course. Pubs are just great because they all have atmosphere. Sure sometimes it’s an atmosphere of desperation and dark despair, but that’s okay, too, because – bitter!
- Weather. Sure in Colorado we get weather – it’s three weeks of gorgeous sunshine and clear blue skies, two days of blizzards, followed by three weeks of sunshine, etc, etc. Here it’s bright sunshine for thirty minutes, cloudy for three hours, rainy for five hours, a brief respite where the wind picks up, then it starts raining again. Only now it’s blowing into your face. But still it makes every day a little different.
- Pretty much anything edible, except the peanut butter. Bread that’s so good that you can make a meal from it and a bit of cheese. Chicken that actually tastes like something other than bland generic white meat. Gorgeous great beef, though truth be told, it is awfully expensive. Still, worth it on the odd occasion.
- Pharmacies where people will actually come out from behind their counters and talk to you. I find American pharmacies really rather depressing and try and avoid them as much as possible. Here it’s almost a pleasure to go to one.
- Sandwiches. In the US, lunch is pretty much burgers of one sort or another, or subs. Now I have nothing against Jimmy John’s for instance, and when I’m hankering for a sub they make a pretty fine one. Here though, everyone eats sandwiches. Proper sandwiches, cut on a diagonal and made with two or three ingredients. Not those proto-Dagwood sandwiches, with three types of sliced meat, several slices of bacon, tomato, lettuce, onion, cabbage, grilled eggplant, avocado, cheese, capers, caper berries, tomato jam, aioli, and an onion ring pinned to the top of the teetering mountain of ingredients with a cavalry saber.
Okay, there might be a few more things, like Maltesers, which are malted milk balls like Whoppers, only so much better, because they coat the outside of the confection with real, honest-to-god chocolate instead of a waxy chocolate flavored coating. Yeah, I’m going to miss those. And ice cream served at intermission at theatres. And freshly baked artisanal quality bread everywhere you turn. So I’d say it’s safe to say, we’ll probably be back. But say it in a thick Austrian accent, like Arnold….
“I’ll be baaacckkk.”