If lunches in Barcelona were a weekly event I might, of course, grow somewhat weary of them. The array of choices would require great discretion. Would Paris be preferable? Or Palm Beach for the weekend? Maintenance of a Learjet must also have its complications. However encumbered by these decisions my sojourn in luxurious surroundings is restful. I am, however, fussy about the cappuccino I order. I want it with one shot and extra foam so that the top of it resembles a creamy pudding. In swish establishments my cappuccino arrives in fine bone china cups with small and crunchy Italian biscuits. I can make my cappuccino last for a very long time.
Sometimes I browse through the collection of newspapers available on tasteful antique tables. And I occasionally eavesdrop discreetly on serious money conversations conducted by people who are actually staying in the pampered rooms. I imbibe the extravagant atmosphere of their requirements. I feel like a millionaire, but I do not need to ponder on my millions and how I got them…whether I was ruthless in their acquisition, roared at secretaries, paid low wages or was an exemplary entrepreneur. I have simply needed to buy a cappuccino and let my imagination roam.
One hotel I occasionally frequent has a magnificent art collection. I admire the paintings in a leisurely manner …enjoying the artistic intimacy the informal atmosphere bestows. Since no-one has come to announce that my Learjet is awaiting, I eventually leave the hotel. Dinner will probably be home cooked, not eaten from gleaming plates resting on pristine white linen. But buying some exotic sauce can add a dash of panache to the plainest cuisines. For small luxuries are many and varied and sometimes savouring a 99 ice cream while strolling on a beach can feel as delicious as any Michelin starred dessert.
Yes, that is the great thing about small luxuries. They rarely stretch the budget. And sometimes they can feel very big indeed.
(Re-shared with the kind permission of RTE Lyric FM.)
Warm wishes and sparkles,
‘..Grace Wynne-Jones has written an entertaining, intelligent and genuinely funny story…this is a great read, especially for commuters…guaranteed to shorten any journey.’ The Irish Times re. ‘The Truth Club’