Monday, December 27, 2010

Awake in a foreign country

It snowed in the night here in Dartmouth, and then it started raining about five o'clock. Why, if it wasn't for the place names all sounding so foreign, I'd think that I was in England.

Yesterday I didn't eat any doughnuts, which is a crime against God and reason, so today I'm going to have to trudge through snow and ice, such is my dedication to visiting Tim Horton's and eating an inappropriate number of fried foods, dipped in maple syrup.

Or perhaps it's appropriate to eat maple syrup dipped doughnuts, because I'm in Canada, after all.

Or perhaps it's inappropriate, because I'm currently in a warm house filled with food, for me to wander off in search of mass-produced junk food.

Although I am in Canada, which has a large number of large people wandering around with their mouths permanently ajar, so perhaps it is appropriate of me to try to fill myself up with as much food as possible, as quickly as possible.

International etiquette is so difficult to get right.

Anyway, I woke at 5:30 this morning and slunk downstairs to combat insomnia by sitting in a well-lit room, reading John Crace's Brideshead Abbreviated which I haven't enjoyed very much, as every book that I've read seems to be obliterated by Crace, and every book I haven't read I don't know enough about to understand what's being parodied. Ah well, I suppose I shouldn't get too defensive about the books that I've read.

After that, I shifted down a gear and read a book aimed for primary school children about Chile, from which I learned that the national dish was el completo, a hotdog covered in tomato ketchup, onions, mustard, guacamole, cheese, strawberries, peppermint candycanes, horseradish sauce, Mentadent toothpaste, butter, buttered chicken, jerk chicken, fried chicken, roast chestnuts, caviar, margarine, foie gras and raisins.

I might have exaggerated slightly about all the toppings, but it still seemed a bit unlikely to me that the food the Chileans would be proudest off would basically be a hotdog with stuff on it. I mean, that kind of casual reductionism would be like suggesting that the only food worthwhile of eating that came out of Canada was the maple syrup dipped doughnut, and it's not like you see anyone suggesting that, now do you?


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