It was a nice walk along the river, with the potentially delectable end point of a stop at a highly suitable pub for a pint and a bite to eat. What pleasant anticipation.
Once comfortable installed in said hostelry, it was time to take a look at the menu. 'V' denotes vegetarian - an excellent start for this new phase in my life. How pleasing - not for the first time since embarking on this journey - to have a feeling of riding a wave of responsible feeding.
Apart from the fact that nothing on the menu had a 'V' against it. The simple phrase that 'V denotes vegetarian' was simply an explanatory note on the off-chance that there might be a vegetarian option on said menu at some unspecified point in the future.
On more detailed inspection we found an unlabelled 'V': a chicory, carrot & tomato fondue with goat's cheese.
Now I have never really taken to goat's cheese, but under the circumstances ie being faced with the alternative of a full-on meat-is-murder pub menu, I figured it would be an acceptable choice. And anyway fondues are great. Chunks of crusty local bread dripping great gloopy strands of slowly solidifying cheese, washed down with gallons of white wine, as you gaze out of the window across snow-covered mountains, your bones and muscles aching after a day of perilous downhill activity. What could be better. Yum.
But then it arrived. A small saucer with some even smaller pieces of vegetable sitting in a thin cheese-like soup. And err, that's it.
I mean, come on guys, at least try to make it a little bit easier for me. There I am, trying my hardest to save the planet by eating a more sustainable diet, and then you go and offer me something whose nutritional value might just about keep me going for the time it takes to finish this sentence.
I remembered many years ago a casually misogynistic acquaintance of mine venturing the view that goat's cheese was girl's food and therefore should not be eaten or approved of by those of a masculine disposition. And there was a small guilty part of me that felt I slightly agreed, but I had always tried to keep it to myself. But now here was a supposedly respectable pub chain endorsing the myth, as witnessed by the miniscule portion that clearly was aimed at a diner trying to stay alive on less than 3 calories a day.
I weigh 95kg for goodness'sake. I need food.
You, you pub chefs, restauranteurs, managers, bosses, buyers and decision makers, have all contributed yet further to global warming and the destruction of the ozone layer by making me eat both a starter and a sticky toffee pudding with salted caramel ice cream just to have enough energy to get out of the door, let alone walk home again.
Shame on you.
#campaignforpropersizedvegetarianandveganportionsin publiceatingplaces is not exactly trending on Twitter right now, but it should be.