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So I have a little confession….  I broke the rules of My Lifestyle today.  Big time.  I guess if you’re going to break your own rules, you gotta do it with flair, right?  I sure did…  are you ready?  Don’t tell anyone:
I ate some mighty fine, real fish n’chips, right here in Northern Ireland.  (shhhhhhhhhhh!)

Oh yes I did.

Not those nasty, pretend fish n’chips with the soggy coating and chips cut too thin.  (America, I’m looking at you)  Or, heaven forbid, the kind that come with…. (gasp)… tarter sauce. 

Goodness no.

I’m talking about the kind of fish n’chips that come in a paper box, with firm white fish that flakes with just a little pressure from the tines of your (preferably plastic) fork.  The kind you douse with malt vinegar like you’re putting out a fire.  Where the fries are screaming hot, yet rendered even crispier with a good coating of salt.

Oh yeah, and I had a side order of mushy peas.

Mushy peas? 

WTH are mushy peas, you ask?

Um, they’re peas that have been mushed.  Let’s not make this complicated, shall we?

(Hi Dad… of course the mushy peas weren’t as good as yours.  Right, right… no, no, the fish wasn’t as good as in England either.  No, really.  Trust me.  I promise there was no comparison.  Would I lie to you?)

Ohmigod….  this is a meal that takes me right back to being a kid with a proper English father.  When I was 10 years old, we went to England to visit my sister and her new baby Linz (yep, the Linz I had my Vegas weekend with at the beginning of this adventure, nice job remembering that detail!).  I remember getting fish n’chips wrapped in newspaper and devouring every crispy bite, then licking oil off my fingers.  When I was older, BK (Before Kids, you know… that other life all parents barely remember) and newly married, we visited Linz in England again and again I had some honest-to-goodness fish n’chips.  It’s a Must-Do in the UK, friends.

Ah, memories….

So imagine my surprise and delight when I saw a proper chippy a block from our hotel (for you Yanks, a chippy is a proper fish n’chip shop).  So I’ve been yapping about getting some for days and finally got the opportunity tonight when I convinced Steve and Nick to go with me.   Oh yesssssssssss…..

Only difference now from Those Glorious Years Of My Youth is that I’m now, ahem, vegan and don’t eat that kind of stuff.

But I did, just once, tonight.

And while it satisfied both my tastebuds and my nostalgia, my tummy is thinking we ain’t doing that again.  That’s ok, it was worth every tasty, glorious bite.  #smartercities Challenge