I’ve been told that under communism, everybody’s flat looked the same inside because all the furniture factories were state-run and so there was only a limited variety on offer. Now that we all live under capitalism and have to support the world banking system, all we can afford is Ikea furniture, so everybody’s flats still look the same inside.
When Our Lass suggested having breakfast at our local Ikea store, my immediate question was ‘why?’ If Ikea is the only source of breakfast then I’ll skip it, thanks, and go straight to lunch. But no, we needed to have breakfast at Ikea because the restaurant opens an hour earlier than the store so we can eat, get in the store, buy some overpriced crap and get out again before the place fills up. I’d already had lunch there and it compared favourably with the kebab van in the pub car-park back home so I wasn’t immediately filled with a sense of foreboding.
When we reached the front of the queue, we asked for their breakfast menu. ‘We haven’t got one,’ said the chef. He indicated the lunch menu and sweet tray and told us we could only choose from what we could see there. We decided on fried schnitzel with potato salad and ordered.
‘No’, said the chef, this time indicating only the sweet tray. ‘Only what you can see there.’
So, breakfast in Sweden is a strawberry trifle and a muffin. Oh, juice too? Splendid. I’m so glad I got up early and drove all the way here instead of having breakfast at home like normal. The muffin turned out to be a solidified mass of burnt sugar stuck to the paper napkin and the ‘juice’ would make an EU trading standards officer faint. It was water coloured orange with added sugar.
All around us, the place was filling up with feeble-minded mouth-breathers, come for their weekly entertainment. They sat at their tables pawing battered Ikea catalogues, planning their route and wondering whether to buy some more tea-lights or not.