Sham Loaf

A perfect loaf.

It stood there, in the display case, brown, crisp, crinkled. It radiated an air of scrumptiousness about it and so hapless woman with a craving for a wholesome slice of loaf bread that I was, I excitedly ordered a slice from the indifferent servedora.

She plonked a slice of the bread on a saucer and handed it to me and rang up the rest of my order. I nearly dropped my lunch tray when the green numbers popped in the display. The cash register blinked twenty more pesos than what I expected would be my bill.

“How much for the bread?” I asked the servedora/cashier and she quoted the price; way, way up higher than the amount I had fixed in my hungry mind.

“And that’s not bread. That’s choco marble cake.”

Oh.

Okay. Oh.

I really presumed it was a loaf of bread in the display.

Oh.

So okay, it’s my fault because I didn’t ask beforehand what was in the display case. But see, in my vocabulary, and the accompanying word pictures, cakes could either come in layers, logs, tiers, or boxes but never loaves. Loaves are reserved for breads.

I was duped. And highway robbed.

So I resigned myself to having a loaf of cake for dessert. 

When I finally got to taste the cake though, the tendrils of respect I had for the office canteen’s baker melted like butter in a double boiler.

Cakes, again in my vocabulary, should be moist, scrumptious, heavenly, and light. Angels ought to come out from the blue skies and sing hymns once I get to taste the cake. But this loaf does none of the above to my senses.

The piece I struggled to swallow abused my esophagus like a serial rapist on a rampage. It was oilier than the shores of Guimaras after that tanker accident. And worse, it tasted like the made for business cake that it was, bland and lifeless.

So much for a sweet ending to lunch.

Moral of the story: Always have a glass of water at hand when eating pastry products, especially if dining in the office canteen.

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