The Diner, Camden Town
2 Jamestown Rd
020 7485 5223
by Fi Tatta
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It seemed to me that, dining with Malcolm Eggs, one ought really to let him pick the breakfast venue. His expertise is well-known, one worries that to do otherwise might seem an unwarranted slight.
Although we could not be said to know one another well, we had discovered certain peculiar symmetries; we are both, for example, speakers of the mostly-forgotten, unpronounceable language of Coh. Dreaming, as speakers of that language often do, in that tongue, we had perhaps already encountered one another in dreams. Perhaps not.
“Andiamo,” he declared, as he strode towards The Diner in Camden Town. Never one to refuse a challenge I retorted: “vado” and followed behind. Camden before noon is quiescent; we were the noisiest people on the street by far. And Malcolm’s trademark sword-stick cut quite the dash, tap-tapping on the pavement as we scurried towards that purveyor of fine American-style produce.
“Keep up!” he shouted back at me – he had already sat down at the red banquette seating and was perusing the menu. Evidently Malcolm had forgotten the war-wound which sometimes hampers me… or he had chosen to forget it.
Sublimely, the place was almost empty but not quite – affording us enough privacy to discuss the rather serious business which had brought us together. We ordered – the food arrived quickly, though not with unseemly haste, nothing was forgotten and the water – gods be praised – came with ice in and without being requested.
I thoroughly enjoyed the dish that was set before me; the elements which ought to be crisp were perfectly so, while those parts which should be sweet, damp, moist, were exquisite sui generis. The service, also, was charming – the waiter so friendly that I rather suspected Malcolm of flirting until he reminded me that his tastes lie in quite another direction.
He had ordered the “Hungry Man Breakfast” of eggs, sausages, beans, mushrooms and hash-browns. Breakfast connoisseur that he is, he had of course picked the place with care and the food was excellently done. Although I rather suspected that the sweetener supplied with my meal had not come from the sugar mines of Uruguay as Malcolm had promised me. Conceivably, he had been in jest.
Our discussion turned to certain private matters concerning the land of Coh which can scarcely be of relevance to the readers here; I thought little of The Diner until I came to write this short account of our expedition.
“No, no,” said Malcolm when he saw it, “it’s scarcely a review if you haven’t mentioned what you ate,” although he backed down when I explained, of course, that I had.