Flying frills to Marseilles
In The tummy trilogy, Calvin Trillin writes about spending the 35 dollars he saves on a "no frills" ticket to Florida on a luxurious and definitely frilly picnic. He makes a very good point.
Before, I used to love airline meals. And not because of the food, not at all, but because of the tray. All the little boxes and envelopes and tiny cartons and mysterious foamy tastless stuff in them. Fascinating.
Now that they no longer hand out trays, but sell the same foamy stuff at ridiculous prices, I usually pack a picnic. I always seem to fly at or around mealtimes, and airports are uniformly dismal and expensive, and full of idiot calories. Somehow I seem to think that food eaten while travelling doesn´t count, so everything´s allowed, even unto chocolate at odd hours. But still, I prefer to fill up with intelligent calories, that is, from food that tastes good.
A plane picnic must be small, as you don´t want to be full, but merely to ward off hunger until you come to good food. You don´t want to snaffle a desperate bag of crisps at the car rental counter and have it spoil your first local meal. So I´m taking this little metal tiffin box with some sweet little claudia plums, a couple of wedges of Galician cheese I´ve recently been given by a generous friend, and two raisin oatmeal cookies, baked by yours truly to crispy-chewy perfection (I´m not being vain, just surprised).
J will meet me at Marseilles, and tomorrow we drive to Montpellier to see the Tonga-Samoa match. It´s not so much about the rubgy as about the fact that Tonga will be so close. All those who thought my devotion to the Island Kingdom was a fad or a conversation ploy, think again. I have a big flag, and mean to make noise in the stands.
Also, a couple of days in the south of France never hurt anybody, I hope.