Monday, February 8, 2010

Waking Up in Tunis

I had a good room service dinner last night of demi poulet avec légumes with some rosé from Hammamet, but I woke up at 1 am after only four hours' sleep, starving.

I spent the next five hours tossing and turning with empty arms, waiting for breakfast to come.

I really expected the included buffet to be like all the ones we ate in Morocco: French-style, consisting exclusively of hard-boiled eggs, sliced mortadella, orange cheese (or maybe a spreadable white one), tomatoes and croissant. Instead this morning I stumbled upon a breakfast that was far more Middle Eastern, with countless olives and spreads and terrines of brozn meats and roasted vegetables. Fortunately for me and my weight loss attempts (which I'm hoping to not throw out the window while I'm here), I found the hard-boiled eggs, tomato, and grapefruit, and splurged on a very un-French pistachio-dusted phyllo pastry that glistened under the overhad lights, brightening my eyes before the sun was even up.

At a nice tourist hotel like this one, a woman dining alone gets the royal treatment: the best seat in the house, not situated awkwardly in the middle of the room,with coffee service and just as much milk as you'd like while older British couples and confused Japanese tourists wander about looking for spoons and a way to quench their thirst.

Upon my last sip of caffeinated coffee (which I've taken to drinking unsweetened), I folded my napkin, and mouthed the word "parfait" ("perfect") without making a sound. I smugly looked around at the others, gathered my things and bid adieu to the maitre d' with a "très bon:"

I'm such a show-off sometimes.

Forgive typos on AZERTY keyboard!

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