Coals to Newcastle (as it were)

5th April 2010 | Daily Life | 1 comment

An intriguing exchange in Sainsbury’s this morning. Two women were standing at the flour section frowning at a tiny bag of flour which one of them held in her hand.

‘Do you bake?’ she said to me. I nodded. ‘Could you tell me whether I’d get 24 fairy cakes out of this amount of flour?’ ‘I’m not sure,’ I said. ‘Why don’t you buy the larger bag of flour to be safe?’ ‘Because it’s heavy, and I have to carry it to Brussels.’

There was a thoughtful silence.

‘Why don’t you just buy the flour in Brussels?’ I asked timidly.
‘Because everything in the British shop in Brussels is three times as expensive!’

Another pause.

‘But you wouldn’t have to go to the British shop in Brussels for flour, surely!’ I said. ‘Couldn’t you just buy the flour in any grocery store there?’

‘You can’t just get flour in Brussels, believe me!’

We are not quite reconciled to being Europeans.

1 Comment

  1. peter

    It’s those weird Belgians, with all their fine beers, their superb chocolates, their tangy mussels, their heavenly steaks-and-chips-and-mayonnaise, and not a cake to be found!


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