When I turned 35, 38 or 42, actually I can’t remember which year it happened exactly, 2003, 2006 or 2010, I was frolicking through the food halls of La Grande Épicerie de Paris on Rue de Sèvres, in Paris’ stylish 7th arrondissement, to get some tea from Kusmi, I was in desperate need of new supplies of Prince Vladimir and St. Petersburg, my two favourite blends (and boxes, because who am I kidding, I buy it mostly for the boxes), but then I got sidetracked, sidetracked by a salami that looked so yummy as any salami ever could, the sign said “saucisson des Abruzzes”, and although I didn’t know where the Abruzzo are, Italy, I guess, have to look it up these days, I was sure that they produced the best salami in the whole world, it just looked so yummy, perfection, absolute perfection, I bought 500 gr of it, a baguette, a bottle of red wine, can’t remember what kind but I guess St.Émilion as I usually have St.Émilion, and however Italian that salami was, I was still in Paris, France, wasn’t I? I made it happily to my hotel nearby to meet my mother who was waiting in her hotel room, you see, after dropping my tea in my room, I was supposed to pick her up to go to a nice place to celebrate my birthday, kind of a family tradition to dine in Paris on our birthdays, but I had just made a change of plans: I was planning on having a picnic in my hotel room! Baguette, salami and Bordeaux while looking out of the window. How swell, I thought, how very swell – but my mother’s reply was “What? Are you crazy?” – an hour later I had Bœuf Bourguignon at a nice place on Île St. Louis. Mothers! But I kept the box. I’m a romantic.