Jay Rayner wrote a piece for The Guardian on the new meal rations for the British military forces. I found the article after hearing him interviewed on PRI’s The World, where he said the food wasn’t bad at all.  It reminded me of what food we encounter when we’re traveling — even if that traveling is to not-so-foreign countries.

Food is memorable because it’s good or bad, or because of the environment in which you ate it.  My dear friend Kathy and I had a lovely picnic lunch on a walk out of Sligo one time.  This was a million years ago, and I’m not sure today if any hotel or guest house would put together such a simple meal:  a flask of tea, cheese sandwiches, some fruit (I think) and a few biscuits.  It was perfect for a walk.

            There was a memorable London meal of roast beef and Yorkshire pudding at a restaurant with a group of college friends when we were on a theatre visit from New Mexico State University (again, ages ago).  It was memorable, because charming John Zwernemann was able to get us extra portions of custard on our trifle.

In Ireland, food taught me how to properly pronounce “Donegal.”  I was staying in a B&B in Galway, I think, and there were a few Brothers staying there, too.  They taught me this fine rhyme:

Where do you come from?
            Donegal

How are your spuds?

            Big and small

How do you eat them?

            Jacket and all

And do they bother you?

            Not at all

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