This past week, elegance has eluded me..
Like having my post-respiratory-issue-still-congested self stuck on a three hour "Disney" flight (i.e. a flight from home into the Orlando airport teeming with bright-eyed, bushy-tailed, very vocal and excessively energetic youth on their way to spend a week at Disney). That, left me feeling very inelegant.
Or the following 2.5 hour flight from Orlando to Houston on an oversold flight - it was a boarding nightmare. Not elegant at all.
Or the subsequent late-night hour plus drive to my final destination. In the dark. On deserted roads. With a GPS that was refusing to connect to a satellite. If I didn't know where I was going, I am sure a period of panic would have set in. That. Would not have been elegant.
There is something about travelling that alters perceptions of the world at large. It's like the world in front of me is one big window and I get to peek in and watch - like TV, but usually more amusing.
So, here is this week's travel observation brain dump:
- It is not uncommon that the behavior of travelling children mirrors the behavior of their parents. Positively or negatively.
- The rodeo is a REALLY HUGE DEAL in Houston.
- Apparently, being 1700 miles away from your family does not relieve you of your obligation to figure out what they are having for dinner. True story.
- There are air passengers who think it is okay to turn on their cell phones and text in-flight (and no, it was not a flight with wi-fi connection). I briefly considered tackling said passenger and ripping the battery from her phone, but really didn't feel like making the evening news. Awkward.
- Apparently, it is not my accent that gives me away as being "from Up North", but my clothing.
- There are men who don't mind being called "Peanut", "Bubba" or "Bear" in lieu of their given names.
- I don't mind being called "ma'am" and having the door opened for me. I have come to expect it when I am travelling in Texas. I know better than to expect it when I am back home.
- There is no good coffee to be found in Brazoria county, TX. I have been there enough times to stand by this statement - it also has been validated by lifelong residents.
- The Kolache Shop in Clute, TX makes the best kolaches. Period. I could eat these by the bucket load. Preferably, filled with sausage.
- People are very willing to tell complete strangers almost anything about themselves. TMI???
- Having 47 members of a high school dance team on your flight is not as loud of an endeavor as one would think - that had to be the least giggly and best mannered horde of teen-aged girls I have ever met (as someone who has mothered two girls through teen-hood, I feel well-qualified to say that).
- When you are dining alone, you tend to get much more efficient service. I am not sure if they feel sorry for you and try to speed things up, or they are worried that your tip isn't going to be as much so they are trying to turn the table more quickly.
- "Please" and "thank you" go a long way toward getting people to help you.
- When your flight is scheduled to go through an airport that is pretty much closed down due to a major winter snow event, it is really helpful to have a skilled Corporate travel agent on your side.
- Home. Is. Good.
What could be so wrong about a cheesy custard that has been gently baked until it has reached a perfectly, silky smooth texture and then given a broil treatment to form a crunchy upper shell that you get to crack with your spoon?
I think if travellers could pack these in their suitcase - at least one per travel day - the airports of this country would be much happier places.
Seriously. How can any one stay miserable when eating cheese? (Unless you are dairy intolerant, of course)
Re: the construction end of these - I used a combination of cheddar and Romano cheeses. Inexplicably, I had no Gruyere hiding in the cheese bin. Since starting FFwD, I can not recall a single stretch of time where I did not have Gruyere in the refrigerator. It has become my "go to" cheese. Surely, the Universe must have changed rotation or something.
Other than that, I followed directions - well, except for my ramekin size (extended baking time and turned the heat up to 250F for the last 15 or so minutes to get it to set).
The final judgment? These were good. Very, very good. Even The Dude ate his. (I was shocked too.)
Yep. More cheese = happier world.
This post participates in French Fridays with Dorie.