I got thinking today about the cultural implications of artificial flavourings. Sounds strange, doesn’t it? What prompted it was the fact that twice in the past week, I have had some foodstuffs flavoured with artificial ’grape’ flavouring. The second of these was grape juice. On the front of the pack it said “100% fruit juice”, but listed the ingredients on the side as grape juice and...flavouring. Hang on, that’s not 100%... So Dole (the manufacturer): you suck.
I’m safe and sound in Osaka, relaxing, acclimatising, and looking for work. Everyone tells me that it should be easy enough with my qualifications, but I’m just hoping that the potential employers see things the same way! At least I have a roof over my head and food in my belly for now, although I’m anxious not to overstay my welcome here—and I wouldn’t mind a bit more peace and privacy now and then.
Here I am, sitting awake at 2am, when I have to get up at 5.30am to go to the airport. Heathrow, that is—the world’s least favourite airport (R) TM. The only part of flying I don’t mind is the actual time in the air. The rest of it I find unbearable. No matter how sensible the departure time appears when I book it, I always find myself out of bed at an ungodly hour in order to travel to the airport in some far-flung fringe of the city it purports to serve, so that I can be there two hours before take-off. Two hours in which I stand in a long queue for the only two counters actually staffed, worrying about my habitually overweight baggage. Will they accept it, or will they demand a couple of limbs in payment?