Why is that every time that I am at an airport, I become so ravenous that I can’t even see straight. I could have inhaled 1/2 side of beef an hour earlier but become so famished as soon as I enter an airport, that I become more concerned seeking out which eateries are open rather than searching for my airplane gate.
Such was the case at 5:30 am (yes, you read correctly) last Friday morning when I arrived at JFK to await my plane to San Juan, Puerto Rico. Although JFK is one of the largest international airports, you would be surprised at how few eateries are open before 6:00 a.m.
At 30 minutes before dawn, the only things that bared food were the broken vending machine and the anemic looking muffin sitting in the showcase of the unattended beverage cart.
We left plenty of time to get to the airport as we dutifully adhered to the airlines recommendation of arriving 2 hours in advance giving us plenty of time to check in and go through the security. We sailed through check-in and zipped through security and were soon seated at our gate – almost one and a half hours early!!!
Now what are we supposed to do? I was too buzzed after my multiple cups of coffee to go back to sleep. I was too wired to concentrate on a book or magazine. The only thing that I wanted to do was to EAT! Even though, I had just eaten breakfast at home 45 minutes earlier, I was famished.
Finally at 6:00 a.m. a few eateries started to open. It was slim pickings as my selections were limited to either stale croissants, (that actually should be called crescents. Those dense 1/4 moon shaped boomerangs had nerve pretending to be francais!) or flavorless “bagel-rolls”. You know those plain white-flour fluffy donut shape rolls pretending to be the more exotic bagel.
Normally I would turn on my heel and walk away but as we were essentially being held hostage at the airport gate, I must admit that some of that “food” sitting under the heat lamps in the showcases started to look mighty appetizing. I was vacillating between ordering the dried-up bacon strips and powdered eggs or the withered sausage links and carb filled muffin.
Luckily I heard the familiar spanish accented voice calling out breakfast orders to the two hair-net wearing fry cooks at the Brooklyn Deli. This Spanish-speaking entrepreneur had seemingly the entire airport at his small booth as his was the only eatery that was actually cooking the food. All the other stands were selling pre-made platters of food that were “cooked” in the microwave.
I quickly ordered from my amigos at the Brooklyn Deli and devoured my usual breakfast of 2 eggs over easy, and a side of bacon.
Now I was ready to board the plane.
Chow for now!