Dooz Oofs Ay Poms De Tare Fritz

There’s pampering, of course. I’ve never quite known what this entails but it sounds terrifying. Something to do with buying – or trying – a lot of pampering products and sitting around in some girl’s bedroom, hundreds of you, all in towelling dressing-gowns, giggling and offering to paint one another’s toenails. Oh no!

Or I suppose you can go to a spa. Can you go to a spa, for pampering? For a treat? What does that involve? More towelling dressing-gowns. Those disposable slippers they give you in posh hotels, sitting about on loungers waiting for your turn to have heavy stones laid along your naked spine or for someone to cover you in mud and cucumber slices. Oh no no no!

What would your idea of a treat be?

My treats have tended to get smaller and more innocent as I’ve got poorer and older, but nonetheless treats for all that.

Sometimes I drive to that distant town and I treat myself to egg and chips and a pot of tea in the café opposite the Post Office. The egg is underdone; the chips are those long thin ones that are probably made of reconstituted potato dust rather than sliced potato. I don’t care: it’s hot food and somebody else has cooked it.

I am reminded of Grandad, who was in the first world war. He was over in France and the only bit of ‘French’ he had – or at least would admit to in front of his grandchildren – was ‘dooz oofs ay poms de tare Fritz sil voo plate’. Maybe it’s genetic, then – a racial or familial memory.

I sit facing the window. I watch people coming out of the Post Office and going in. I pour my tea, lovingly, from a cheap white china pot. I savour the fact that there are two cups of tea in this one teapot. I examine the strange tube of sugar they provide before shuffling it into my handbag (it’ll do for visitors). I read the little poem they print on the paper serviette. What a good idea, to have poems on serviettes. Sometimes it rains and the window steams up from all those damp coats coming in. Sometimes it doesn’t. The ladies behind the counter are friendly. You pay on your way out, not on your way in. Civilised, like.

Chocolates. Mum used to allow Dad one chocolate a day because she was watching their weight. Poor Dad. He was eighty-seven and could hardly move from his armchair. A trip to the loo was a major expedition involving the zimmer frame and a lot of shuffling. Surely he could have had three chocolates? At eighty-seven-and-losing-your-mind does it really matter if you put on a few pounds? For myself, I avoid chocolates, simply because I couldn’t eat just one. A whole box would be gone just like that.

There seems to be a theme to my treats. Could it be food?

Do you allow yourself any special treats?

9 thoughts on “Dooz Oofs Ay Poms De Tare Fritz

  1. I used to allow myself a maple-frosted creme-filled doughnut square once a month, and I’d make it last (for my salivary sake) for two days. Then, the gall bladder went on strike, which did away with fine soft-centered chocolates (on every possible holiday), too. It’s a bought coffee, now, once a season. A spa could do nothing for me (at least, not on the inside, where it really counts). I would let your father have 10 chocolates a day, minimum. Your mother, too — and their daughter as well.

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  2. It took me a few reads to figure out that your grandfather had an interesting diet while in France.

    Treats? All the time. Overpriced (from ice cream shops) chocolate milkshakes are a current favourite

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      1. Well, I’m guessing they were fried, to go with the frites/Fritz. Grandad was a man of few words and anything we learned about the Great War from him was sketchy and random.

        I got the impression he and his fellow soldiers may have frequented a café, wherever they were in France – a village, maybe – and that this was a phrase the other English soldiers may have taught him. It may have been the only thing he knew how to order. He must have eaten a lot of egg and chips. : )

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  3. Treats are good for the soul, and it is always interesting to see how other people treat themselves. I like a little cafe outing myself. I was lingering over a coffee at a cafe this morning when an overzealous waitress kept swooping by as if she was doing laps of the quiet cafe. Was I finished with my coffee? Not yet, and it only made me sip slower. Treats are not to be rushed.

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  4. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one who finds the idea of being pampered at a spa a bit alarming! It’s the little, personal, treats that I most enjoy. A visit to an antique store, just because. Sitting in a comfortable chair, reading a book while the snow falls gently outside. That sort of thing….

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  5. A cafe, definitely. Good coffees and a cake, maybe something along the lines of a sandwich. Take a book with me. Sit outside if possible, interlace watching folk drift past and reading (actually inside at the cafe at Leeds Art gallery is good for this too, they will let you linger almost indefinitely, and have good soup). Pampering *shudder* even someone else cutting my hair drives me crazy (thankfully this is no longer necessary). Oh, a full English at a proper greasy spoon is always a moment of joy too.

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