Category Archives: food

Ordering on the menu

I’m visiting my parents again. My dad is in a long queue for a new knee on the Spanish national health service, so after my conference I trotted a couple of hundred kilometres down the coast to boost his spirits … Continue reading

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Piscine-chauffée socialists

This weekend we were in Sheffield, looking at possible houses to buy. Sheffield’s contrasts always surprise me: green parks jostling alongside brownfield sites and lockups; smart social engagement cheek by jowl with grinding poverty. We found a park none of … Continue reading

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Stop fighting the mountain

Most people who know me can’t quite believe I’m into skiing. Sometimes I can’t believe it either. It’s what insurers would consider a high-risk sport—when I’m usually a very low-risk person—and involves a large amount of consumption: it’s probably (depending … Continue reading

Posted in belief, body, climate, entertainment, environment, exercise, food, france, health, holiday, injuries, location, occupation, person, public, sport, tourism, trains, transport, understanding | 4 Comments

Twice cooked, often recalled

After K. and I returned from an in-laws Christmas in Cardiff, I went out to do a big shop. We rarely do that usually, and we certainly rarely buy much junk food—a bag of posh crisps occasionally, sitting alongside the … Continue reading

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Christmas days

The tendency for Christmas over the years has been for it to spread out, much like my waistline. When I was younger—even ten years or so ago—I saw Christmas as a landmark day. There were celebrations either side, of course: … Continue reading

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Near and Loire

I’ve just come back from a trip to the Loire. A friend is currently trialling working from Lille rather than Oxford (his commute to near Stevenage remains the same time, and roughly the same level of shlep) and he decided … Continue reading

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Postscraps

A few days ago, we went to a Spanish café/restaurant that we’ve been to several times before, and I ordered the same goat’s cheese salad I ordered before. I checked the menu—again—to make sure they hadn’t sneaked any meat into … Continue reading

Posted in body, commerce, consumption, diary, experience, food, location, person, society, spain, tourism | 2 Comments

“Sir, you ordered coffee with the housemaid”

The Spanish have an obsession with ham. It’s a bit like the internet’s own tiresome obsession with bacon, but less frequently acknowledged and therefore harder to fight against. It certainly makes being a vegetarian difficult: a quondam housemate, a Spanish … Continue reading

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Fight re the death

Reading halal and haram slaughterers argue over which of their methods is the most ethical is as edifying as watching representatives from Audi and BMW mudwrestling as a way of proving which car has the plushiest airbags.

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It is good to be sociable sometimes, and never better than at Christmas

Living in a smallish town makes one quite sensitive to the social aspects of what might otherwise be viewed as purely commercial changes in its atmosphere. Around Christmas-time, the change in the quantity of people in Witney on a market … Continue reading

Posted in art, body, children, christmas_2013, cliques, commerce, consumption, diary, experience, family, food, friends, local_independents, music, person, seasons, society, time | 2 Comments