greenbottletree











{02/01/2012}   Day Four

Monday, 2nd January 2012

It’s 1740. When I thought about writing this morning, I would’ve written something completely different. I have no idea what I’m going to write about now as I am no longer in the mood to write some observations about differences between men and women. Though now I’m on the subject, I would like to throw this one out to you: why do men not seem able to see, for example, the tea rim on a mug when washing up? Washing up is dip, cursory wipe, draining board. For me it’s vigorously wash, check, RINSE, draining board. I get very annoyed having to re-wash some things, something I have neither time nor inclination to do.

Rant over. My friend Chris and I went to Dungeness today. He wanted to drive his new car in the daylight for the first time since getting it. Dungeness is somewhere that fascinates me. Today, blue sky and fairly windy, it really cleared my head. Had fun taking photos and feeling windswept-energised.

I currently feel motivated to write but I’m struggling to write here. Only 183 words down. Eek.

Tonight, Chris and I have decided to go out for dinner. I love cooking so I eat homemade food and I think it’s generally more to my enjoyment than eating out. I don’t mean that to sound pompous but I do like my cooking and I think it is very difficult to determine what food will be like in a restaurant, and price certainly doesn’t determine a good or bad meal. I’m hoping we go to a Mexican restaurant round the corner, Conchita’s. The food is good and it’s erring on the cheap side. On the theme of food again!

My favourite restaurant has one Michelin star, The Sportsman at Seasalter, near Whitstable in Kent. I used to live a walk along the beach from that restaurant, they were happy times indeed. It sums up all I love about eating out. The menu is short (maybe five or six choices for each course), it changes according to the season, it’s priced like a high end pub (it is a pub), there is only one sitting per table so you are never rushed or told you’ve come to the end of your two-hour slot before dessert is over, the price range for wine is wide, there is a lot of space between the generously sized tables so you’re not aware of other diners, the staff are informally dressed and friendly and the dishes are more adventurous than I’d normally try, thus making it well and truly worth my while paying to eat out. I vaguely recall spending £60 for a three course meal, a glass of bubbly, a third of a bottle of decent wine and tip.

I went to Wagamama’s recently for lunch. For shared starters, a noodle dish, two soft drinks and a tip, we each spent c£20. I used to live in Japan and I am very particular about eating Japanese food in the UK. Most of it tastes nothing like what I ate in Japan. Now I have finally accepted that Wagamama’s is not Japanese food, rather fusion food (about which I may rant at a later date) I can bear to eat there. It always tastes fresh, that’s not my issue. But £20 is not a cheap lunch. The noodles were distinctly lacking in flavour and I added more soya sauce to that one dish than I would ever normally add to food to feed two or more. Bland. It’s not normally that bad, I do concede. My point is that it’s a well known chain, there are some lovely looking dishes but I go in there for fuelling up rather than culinary delight. But it’s not as cheap as it should be.

If I’m hungry and in desperate need of mere fuel, I would rather pay a few quid to get what will be guaranteed a poor quality meal than go into a chain restaurant and get a mediocre meal, that as a general rule I know I could make at home and probably make taste better, that will cost me over a tenner.

If I want to go out for a meal with friends, I would hope one of us knew a great, independent, local place, or make it a special treat and go somewhere … I was going to say “expensive”, then “posh”, but that really is my point: how do you guarantee a good meal out? Hurrah for the local Mexican, I’m looking forward to going out now.

I have learned a valuable lesson about writing today. It takes me a long time to get to a point, any point. I hope that I continue writing this for six months and I learn to be more succinct. Totally over word count, 794.

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