Eating out is, or should be, a pleasure and a privilege. And to complain because one has just had to spend a week eating out, paid for by their employer, is inappropriate. Really, it is, and I'm not going to do it. But the unthinkable is starting to happen - I am beginning to get to the stage where nine times out of ten, I would rather eat at home.
Let's forget about the whole foodie-on-a-diet thing for the moment as well - the fact is, it is possible to eat out and still lose weight, but it is difficult. So generally, when I'm away for prolonged periods I accept that the weight is going to stay the same or perhaps creep up a little. I've made my peace with that. I just can't bring myself to be the person on the table who orders the green salad with dressing on the side.
But the fact of the matter is, most of the time nowadays when I eat something in a restaurant, I find myself thinking that I could do better at home. And I am not, for one moment, claiming to be a great cook. I am a competent cook.
There will always be restaurants where what comes out of the kitchen is a little bit special, that gets your heart racing a little bit faster. I've bored you all before by our bordering on obsessive love of J. Baker's Bistro Moderne. Later this year, we've managed to get a reservation at Heston Blumenthal's new London venture, Dinner. And we're already engaging in spirited debate as to what we'll eat when we go there.
But other than that, I think I'm content to limit my going out from now on. It's unlike me to take a mature line on anything - perhaps being thirty is finally beginning to catch up with me.
This, by the way, is what I came home to on Friday:
A roasted chicken breast with salty, crispy skin. Some simple, asparagus picked just up the road. And a portion of D's delicious lemon couscous. Completely simple and completely delicious, the highlight of my culinary week.