Saturday, March 19, 2011

A Warm Bowl of Chicken Noodle Soup


I'm currently recovering from a cold. I usually get one about every two years; so I was due. I have the usual congestion, sneezing, and of course, the sore throat. It's at these moments that I recall my mother's remedy for a cold: a bowl of Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup, some Nabisco Saltine Crackers, and a coloring book. The combination of these three items always worked wonders and made the discomfort of the cold less irritating. These days, the chicken noodle soup and saltines still work like a charm. (I can do without the coloring book.)

Unfortunately, trying to find a can of Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup or even saltine crackers in Berlin is difficult. But why? We live in a world where there's a McDonald's in every city and town, and where the Internet connects people all over the planet. This is the age of globalization! Yet, despite all these advancements, there are still things only obtainable in the USA. 

When I first came to Europe in the late 1970s, you were advised to bring your own toilet paper since the European stuff was like wax paper. Things have improved a lot since then. The toilet paper is now softer, and almost every German supermarket carries its share of American junk food items such as peanut butter, diet soft drinks, chocolate chips cookies, decaffeinated coffee, and even popcorn.

BTW:  I did eventually get some quasi-chicken noodle soup and cardboard like Swedish whole wheat crackers (yuck). Lesson to be learned: Don't get a cold in Germany. 

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