Thursday, February 26, 2009
DoeS JiMMy BuFFeT eaT aT BuFFeTS?
Meals on our vacation were served in a large dining hall, buffet style.
I love a good breakfast buffet while I am traveling for business (I call them mouth-brothels. No reason to leave your pants zipped). But buffet style eating three times a day when you have small children is a whole different swedish meatball. This is how it works:
First you take the small hand of your offspring and lead them from station to station.
"Look!" you say enthusiastically, "Smoked Salmon! Fresh lamb with Rosemary! Veal Piscata!" Every time you exclaim with delight over some new delicacy, your small child will turn to you and say:
"I want Chicken Nuggets."
Then HALLELUJAH you figure out there are PLAIN NOODLES that you can make with butter and salt! Except the butter is on the other side of the room and it takes you two tries until you figure out how to get it to melt to the satisfaction of your child. After you plop the child down at the table, she will look at the plate and burst into tears because the noodles are curly and she wanted straight spaghetti. You end up agreeing to let her eat a single dinner roll for supper. Then you go in search of your own meal, remembering you had spotted Beef Wellington at one of the stations.
You return to the table with plate and refreshing beverage in hand, only to find that she is finished with her dinner and wants to hit THE DESSERT BAR. You tell her she has to wait until everyone is done with their dinner, which is hardly enjoyable because every two seconds a small voice asks "ARE YA DONE YET? CAN WE GET DESSERT YET?"
So finally you and your spouse put your forks down and go with the children to the dessert bar where they spend fifteen minutes deciding that they really don't want peach cobbler and that they will have the ice cream from the softee machine which THEY MUST OPERATE ALL BY THEMSELVES.
You return to the table only to find that an over zealous service person has cleared your plate.
This was how it went for us breakfast, lunch and dinner for seven days with the exception of the second night of our vacation:
In search of this elusive thing called dinner, Bananna in tow, just as we passed the bread bar, it happened...
She only had time to gasp the words "THE CHEESE...THE CHEESE!!!!" before she vomited in the middle of the dining hall. I looked around, desperate for help, and finding none, left her to guard her own small pool of puke while I sought napkins. Then I tried to mop up the mess while avoiding being trampled to death by a group of Aussies on their way to the shrimp station.
(Banana spent the night curled around an ice bucket-and the whole next day inside the hotel room. Because we pack stomach bugs like other people pack underwear.)
The problem after her recovery was an abnormal FEAR OF CHEESE. For the rest of our vacation, she would tremble at the mere sight of cheddar, fall to pieces as the whiff of a rouquefort, ask to leave the room if she spotted some Jarlsberg. We spent the next week trying to avoid ALL THINGS CHEESE.
We thought she would recover when our trip was over-but it looks like we won't be visiting Wisconsin anytime soon. Every night she makes us check under her bed for Muenster.