I was not only my mother’s daughter; I was also my father’s sun, and he taught me the Boy Scout Motto: Be prepared.
So when I dine out with coworkers or “acquaintances” at places I’m not too sure about, I don’t just do a little online menu research. I also take a big purse and pack a few small items.
A week or two ago I dine out with friends and their friends. (It’s a birthday; why I have no say in choice of restaurant and why I’m meeting several people for the first time.)
The waitress brings our beverages and asks if I would like a straw for my sweet tea. “No thank you,” I say, and retrieve my stainless steel reusable drinking straw from my purse.
Later, our meals arrive, and there’s no salt on the table. Out of my purse comes my small salt grinder of pink himalayan salt (which I never go anywhere without). Everyone borrows the shaker.
Next, I take out a small container which contains about a teaspoon of Vegenaise, which I mix with the restaurant-provided mustard and put on my veggie burger. I also ordered a baked potato, so I take out another small container that holds a pat of Earth Balance.
Finally, we decided to end the dinner with a cup of coffee. I reach into my purse again for a small aseptic container of Silk almond milk.
At which point one of my new dining partners blurts out, “Who the heck ARE you? Freakin’ Mary Poppins?”