Im in London and it’s cold, so very cold I don’t know how anyone can stand it. It’s the kind of chill that would break your ears off. I have gloves in my bag but I use my hands too much to put them on for any length of time so essentially they are useless. Other than the weather, I love London and I could have a ploughman’s lunch sandwich for every meal for the rest of my days if I had to.
Also the cookie selection is off the chain, so to speak. They are called biscuits here, which isn’t the only thing that sets them apart. There’s a subtlety of flavor that I cannot get enough of, truly. It’s not just sweet. A depth exists within the sweet, which is at turns part salty, part grainy – a fullness of taste that doesn’t exist in the united states. They love a biscuit here, and I had been urged by an Englishman I know well to bring back packages of chocolate Hobnobs and custard creams.
I wouldn’t normally, as I hate to bring anything back from anywhere for anyone, as I go everywhere all the time and if I did this, I would do nothing else, but he works on my very old (older than me, but not ridden as much) vintage motorcycle for free and even comes to my house to do it, so with much gratitude, I bought him a big selection – chocolate and dark chocolate and plain. Hopefully they will pass through customs unscathed. Hopefully they will last a night or three with me in a barren hotel room in Shepherd’s Bush uneaten. That’s the challenge, to not eat all of them in my room alone, nothing but me and the bed and the biscuits and the bitter cold outside, too frosty to consider anything but lying under the covers, maybe with the plain hobnobs for company. Perhaps he wouldn’t miss them. He did ask for chocolate after all.
I had bought him a package of chocolate hobnobs last night, on arrival, at the teeming with customers Morrison’s across the street, which is the equivalent of Jon’s market in la – not Von’s – Jon’s – the off brand Von’s with all sorts of Korean ingredients and items of interest to the non-white shopper – but with the insufferable jetlag and the loneliness of the long distance traveler, they were gone by morning.
I texted him in fury – how could he allow me to purchase him such a delectable treat knowing full well I’d never be able to resist them? I was surprised myself, my own greed and intense, insufferable hunger outweighing good sense and default fear and loathing of carbohydrates. He told me to be careful, that the biscuits were evil and I agree with him. They are evil because I already have decided between the last paragraph and this one to open the package of plain hobnobs.
Ok I have stopped writing to eat two plain Hobnobs. That’s not bad is it? To give a gift to a talented mechanic of a package of cookies with 2 missing? It’s not my fault, it is the cookie’s – or biscuit’s doing. They’re oat based, which never digests well, and I will see fully formed oats later in my toilet future. I wonder if someone will be able to tell my fortune from these oats. I am sowing some wild oats over here. There’s another style of biscuit called ‘digestive’, which doesn’t sound good, but is so good. I think they should change the name, but then folks wouldn’t know what to ask for. They taste like those cookies you give infants when they are teething. I only know that because I used to be a Sunday school teacher/unpaid babysitter and ate quite a few sleeves of those when the infants in my care refused them. They are delicious dunked in tea, which I wouldn’t normally do, and which I am fairly opposed to because it breaks up the bind of flour and water and sugar if its not eaten within a fraction of a second, but for biscuits originating from this cold island on the other side of the atlantic, I am prepared to make a rare exception.
If I lived in London I would eat only cheese and pickle sandwiches (ploughman’s lunch) and biscuits and that’s not good for anyone even said ploughman, but the food in Britain, despite what anyone will admit to, is really fucking delicious. I’d even go so far as to say it’s my favorite, and I am including the british style Indian and Chinese and indonesian cuisine that you can’t even really get in America. People eat good here, even if its humble scraps from Morrison’s or that weird Chinese take-away that looks less like a restaurant and more like a veterinarian’s office, with nothing but a receptionist at a big white desk/counter with no seats and no visible kitchen, just a menu and foil containers with white cardboard lids. Mmmmm. I am thinking I might eat all those Hobnobs. They’re plain, and he wanted chocolate.