Eating out is one of my favorite things to do, mostly because I'm not exactly Martha Stewart in the kitchen. One thing that always surprises me here in America though, is that even in some of the fancier restaurants, you are mostly expected to use the same cutlery for each course. When I finish my appetizer, I always put my knife and fork together, vertically on the plate for the server to take away before the next course is served. So I really hate when they pick up these utensils and place them back on the table when removing the plate, either that, or they gesture for you to do so. Yuck!!! Why can't I have clean cutlery for my next course without having to ask for it specially? I personally think it's pretty gross to have your used cutlery sitting on the table between courses, I don't remember this happening in the UK!
One thing I have become used to, however, is the practice of being given your bill promptly - sometimes before you've even finished eating. I hated this when we first moved here, but I guess some things are easier to get used to than others. Nowadays, if I don't get the bill promptly, I start looking for the waiter and get all twitchy. If we ever move back to the UK, I wonder if I'd find it difficult getting back to having to ask for the bill again. Ah, first world problems...!
The High School in our neighborhood has a massive parking lot which is always full of cars belonging to students and teachers. It got me wondering what happens at lunch time. Do hundreds of students get in their cars to go out for lunch? That would be total chaos! In Scotland, we have an hour for lunch. You can opt to stay in school and eat, or you can leave to go and have your lunch elsewhere - at home, the local chippy, or wherever you like. We would walk down the High Street and grab a tomato soup and iced bun from the bakery before walking slowly back up to school. Even when we lived in Glasgow where the school was a lot bigger, we would leave school and walk downtown for lunch. You're not allowed to do so here, lunch must be eaten in the cafeteria and either brought from home or purchased there. I don't know if students here even have a full hour for lunch, but I'm glad I experienced being able to leave school in the middle of the day for a wee break.
It would appear that they have changed the chocolate used for Cadbury's Creme Eggs in the UK. There has been a major outcry and no bleedin' wonder! Sorry America, but I always describe your chocolate as being dumbed down. It just doesn't compare with the creamy, melt in your mouth chocolate we get back home. Don't get me wrong, it does fine and I have been known to eat copious quantities on occasion, but it just isn't as good as British chocolate - especially the legendary Cadbury's Dairy Milk. Cadbury's was bought by Kraft however, and they have decided to change the chocolate used in the British eggs to a standard Cadbury's chocolate. I'm sure it will be good, but for goodness sake, why change something that isn't broken?! And as if that's not bad enough, they've also reduced the number of eggs sold in multi-packs, without reducing the price! Sort it out Cadbury's/Kraft. The Creme Egg is an icon and should remain the same. Imagine if they changed the Reese's Peanut Butter Cup over here? Outrage would ensue! Yep, another first world problem!
On that note, I'm off for a brew. I'm craving a Creme Egg now, so it's probably just as well that there are none in the house. Happy eating y'all!