Close Encounter of the Gravy Kind

CloseEncounters_137PyxurzI suspect most writers are people-watchers. We can’t help ourselves. We are world class busy-bodies who excuse our nosiness as research… allegedly.

With that in mind I relay the following in the interests of character development.

On the way back from Central Library in Stoke yesterday Peter and I decided to stop off at the local carvery for lunch as Peter had a meeting later that day, and it saved us cooking; which is always a plus in my book.

Having been served turkey etc from the carvery and selected our veg we moved on to the side table for the cranberry sauce etc only to find that there was a queue. Taking up access to the serving counter was an elderly couple who seemed to be having trouble ladling gravy. I was about to offer my assistance until the old lady finally turned away from the gravy tureen to reveal her ‘lunch’ and the source (or should that be sauce) of her problems became very obvious.

Her plate was heaped – and by that I quite literally mean piled as high as the plate was wide – with, I noted, her husband’s plate similarly loaded. These were veritable food mountains that Richard Dreyfuss would have cried to achieve. Peaks of meats and veg decorated with a steaming lava flow of gravy delicately dribbled down its sides. One more roastie and the entire edifice would have collapsed in a landslide of catastrophic proportions.

Quite artistic in its way… except…

I am not tall by any means, and this person was at least four or five inches shorter than me not to mention slimmer by a decent margin, which made me wonder where in hell she was going to put it all?

Did that capacious bag looped over her arm conceal an economy sized doggy-bag? Or did she really have hollow legs? It was hard to see how she could possibly eat that much at one sitting.

Having eaten our own meal, and drank our drinks and sat chatting for a while. We walked past this couple now trenchering their way through their desert (which we had decided against I hasten to add).

So had they eaten all  of their main course or left half of it on the plate?  Or was that bag even now weighted down by a dozen roast potatoes?

Who knows. It could be that this was their weekly treat that fuelled them for several days. Or perhaps they walked ten miles a day with the dog and burned it off. I make no other comment beyond bewilderment.

Being an inveterate people-watcher I wonder about these things. Doubtless this pair will turn up in a story at some point as the carvery-codgers.

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