I felt like such a cliché today.
I spent more time in London Heathrow and Aéroport International de Genève than at the meeting I flew to la Suisse for. Power dress, designer coat, oversized handbag and the all important BlackBerry – I was definitely a cliché today.
No George around though. Not at Giraffe for my first coffee, nor at Pret for my second. Geneva was no different – not a hint of a sexy corporate downsizer. I drown my disappointment (and get through the next 3 hours before my flight) at the airport Caviar House & Prunier Seafood Bar. I refuse the English menu and grammatically incorrectly order in French – the Gravalax (CHF 30) s’il vous plait.
Ryan Bingham didn’t hang out at airport restaurants – he was too savvy a traveller to waste a day on one meeting. The rest of us clearly have miles to go (yes, yes, intended). I look around as I sip the very forgettable Pinot Grigio (CHF 8). Airport bars and restaurants are designed for single travellers (single as in one, not as in non-couple). What a fantastic training ground to build one’s confidence about dining alone! Lovely single BB – here’s the answer to your email.
I don’t know anyone who would think twice about walking into an airport diner and ask for a Table for ONE. At the airport, the tables are small, menus simple, service inconspicuous and my reason for being there on my own perfectly acceptable. Nobody wonders why I am eating alone. Nobody cares that I hide behind my phone or magazine. No waiter asks me if I am waiting for someone before they can serve me. While more often than not all these apply at a “regular” restaurant too, why have I convinced myself that I am more comfortable at a bland airport eatery than in the real world?
I know why. You know why too. I’ve cocooned myself in a false sense of security that an airport’s antiseptic environment allows. What’s it going to take for this caterpillar to become a butterly? The jury’s still up in the air on this one…