Breakfasts and Beds: Reka Dom, Devon
43 The Strand
Devon EX3 0AY
by Armand Croissant
‘Breakfast is just there,’ says the hobbling lady, ‘don’t worry, you’ll hear us.’ I am, for reasons too complicated to divulge (but most certainly glamorous and exciting), in a bed and breakfast in Topsham, a sweet village that totters on the coastline of Devon. The proprietess has shown me to my room, which is huge. I swim in the bed, a decanter of port lies beside it.
The next day. Breakfast. The house is huge, rambling. Am I in front of the right door? ‘Well the thing about Tescos is…’ a voice rises above a boiling kettle. There is a table, set for twenty people, at which two people sit. I sit. I am not sure what to do. Plastic boxes full of brightly coloured fluids litter the table. ‘Well I mean really,’ says the proprietess. She regards me. ‘If you’ll just help yourself,’ she says, mid flow. Does she mean these vats of unknown substances? I am still. ‘If you’ll just help yourself,’ she says once more. Ah! She is pointing to rows of jars of cereal. ‘The thing about care is that you give and you give and you give,’ says one of the people. I know what to do with cereal. I have a huge bowl, and finish it, replete. She regards me once more. ‘And what would you like for breakfast?’ she asks. ‘Sausage egg bacon and beans?’ ‘Just some toast,’ please, I mutter, unable to ingest any more. She makes me three pieces.
I leave, wishing only that I had been able to sample the cooked breakfast; for it looked as inviting as a warm pub on a cold winter’s night.