My stomach was rumbling. I don’t know about you but by 5pm I like to know dinner is on its way so I can either start the anticipation or admit defeat and find something to nibble.

This evening I caved and nibbled. This is the person who, to celebrate handing in their final year dissertation at university bought a pizza and ate it with a portion of satisfied smugness outside the library, of all places. Instead of directing my steps to the student’s union for a drink like so many of my peers, I headed down a grey and slightly shabby street, the only shops being Premiere and One Stop until I reached the well-known sanctuary that is Italian Express. There I bought a goats cheese and red pepper pizza to go. After vacating Italian Express (great pizza but somewhat intimidating to eat alone in) I perched on the first chair with a convenient table I could find and, without further ado, polished off that pizza. At one point a course-mate approached, admired the pizza with an appreciative nod, but then jumped back in alarm at my grease-stained grinning face. So yes, I eat with little to no reason. Tonight I had just been watching videos about pancakes, of course I was peckish.

What can we justify as a suitable pre-dinner snack? Prayers for something convenient to scoff before anyone notices tend to go unanswered and you’re stuck looking at a deserted wasteland of a fridge, bar the soggy stick of celery and rock hard lemon. If you’re lucky there’s a crust of bread left on the kitchen surface, the underdog of the loaf, but well accustomed to a smear or two of Nutella.

There is little hope when you resort to opening cupboards unless you’re prepared to eat cereal – muesli anyone? Don’t get me wrong, I love cereal, anything with crunchy clusters and curls of chocolate is my kryptonite and is, essentially, dessert for breakfast. My ex-boyfriend introduced me to drowning this crunchy chocolatey cereal in hot chocolate. Yes. Hot chocolate. The chocolate curls would then slowly melt, oozing gently over the clusters before dripping dangerously into the warm chocolate milk. To counterbalance this outrageous offering of morning nourishment he topped it with chopped banana. I would always look forward to breakfast.

No matter what you manage to find and then scrape together (in my case an open sandwich of bread crust, ham and sun dried tomatoes – surprisingly sweet and juicy), once dinner is served and you’re at the table with your family eating noodles with prawns cooked in garlic and chilli, you know you should have waited. It’s irreplaceable. Bon appétit.

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