nw3 to nyc

Observations on moving my family across the Atlantic

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It’s crazy in here

It’s Labor Day here in the US (yes, it does look weird without the ‘u’). It’s basically a late summer bank holiday and is often cited as the unofficial end of summer. And it seems that this is the day that lots of people return to NYC after summers spent in the Hamptons and other exotic Long Island locations. It’s all very Revenge, if you’ve ever watched that ridiculous but compelling TV programme.

I made a quick visit to Fairway and it was packed with people stocking up and the queues snaked around the store. I have a love hate relationship with Fairway, as I struggle to come to turns with their uneven customer service, but today they coped superbly with the queues and I sped through. The British section was eerily quiet but full of Walkers Prawn Cocktail crisps, which have gone up from 99c to $1.19 since we started buying them, I think we forced the price up all by ourselves. I mention this because it has a new sign, which was hard to photograph because the aisle is narrow, so I will transpose the text below if you can’t quite see it. It’s great:

“A Union Jack here would be trite. And Pandering. We’re above that. Suffice to say here are the icon staples of British life that we import way out of our way to sooth the savage beast who thinks we’re just a bunch of heathens.”

I couldn’t get the picture of the Union Jack painted sports car on the right hand side, which is possibly British made.


blog pic sign

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The prawn cocktail revolution

Ah, Walkers, we miss you! We’ve tried all sorts of different US crisps, which naturally come in enormous bags, enough to feed a family for a month. They’re either too salty or have no salt; too strong tasting or just plain horrible. Fairways comes to the rescue because it sells Walkers crisps for 99c a bag. The only problem with this is that the well kept secret that they do this keeps coming out. I go every week and look at the British section and it’s either feast or famine depending on whether some boxes of Walkers have made their way across the Atlantic. Last week, I scanned the section for the pink bags of prawn cocktail crisps. As I’m scanning, an American lady asks the staff if they have any ‘prawn cocktail chips’ and she explains they are ‘from England’. The men look suitably bemused as prawn cocktail flavour isn’t sold here. They look for some time and whilst her back is turned, I spot two bags nestled in amongst the salt and vinegar hula hoops and carefully extract them and put them in my trolley. I cover up my bounty with my Bounty (just 2 rolls). And then I slowly walk away, feeling victorious. But this week, there must have been some over ordering as every aisle was garlanded with bags of prawn cocktail, like pink decorations. I don’t think I was hallucinating, but I did stock up. Just in case.