Part of the adventure of travel is flying and I love it. Being waited on, relaxed, having lunch served and enjoying the “ride” is part of the fun.
I don’t agree that “to journey is better than to arrive” because for me, the journey is part of the whole experience. Certainly the planning, plotting and scheming to get your travel organized is exciting, as well.
On planes, I have a ritual about eating and I feel sad for people who,just open their hot box and shovel it down without making the experience a pleasurable part of the journey. If you are confined to a metal box, 35,000 feet above the ground, for four hours or more, why not make it fun.
Airline meals are delivered from a trolley in a strange mix of hot and cold food. The bread roll, butter pack, cheese and biscuit are all cold, straight from the fridge. Desserts are usually meant to be cold, but the meal is hot, steaming away under its little alfoil lid and tempting you with its delicious aroma.
So, how do you go about turning airline food into a culinary experience?
First, release your plastic cutlery from its sleeping bag. Pop your bread roll and butter pack on top of the hot dinner, to take the chill off them, while you open the cheese and let it breathe. Cheese needs to be near to room temperature, at least, before you break it apart to top your cracker biscuits.
Open the pepper pack (salt, too, if you add it to your meals), and set off to one side. Butter your bread roll and peel the top off your hot dinner. If you have a side salad or a dessert, remove the lids from their containers, too, and discretely puncture both sides of the fruit juice or water container, to allow it to pour smoothly.
As I go, my wrappings and packaging are placed, one by one, on a tissue or in a small rubbish bag and are wrapped up and popped into the pocket of the seat in front of me, so my eating tray is clear and organized.
Sometimes I have wine, sometimes only soda water – depending on the time of the day, and I serve myself in an imaginary glass (aka “plastic cup”).
After about five to seven minutes, my meal is ready to be experienced as part of the fun of traveling.
On Qantas, on my way to Sydney, lunch was beef casserole with pumpkin and harissa (an Israeli spice), and Israeli cous-cous mixed with sultanas. Both the spice and the cous-cous were new to me and very enjoyable.
Soda water went well with cheese and crackers; I wrapped up the plastic knife and fork in my serviette and stashed them in my carry-on bag (for reasons to be disclosed later) and put my bottle of water aside for later.
Fresh coffee to finish and my meal left me replete. But not so replete I refused Harry’s Premium Ice Cream – Banana and Caramel Swirl.
And I feel very superior, with my Qantas plastic cutlery stashed away – The “borrowed” Qantas cutlery will come in handy, when I eat my lunch the next day, at the #DubboZoo
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