May 02, 2010

Airport Food: I Hate You

I'm about halfway through my four-hour layover at Newark Airport, and I just couldn't resist complaining about the quality of the food at airports in general.

I'm at the point in my life as a traveler where the idea of buying another $37,000 bag of peanuts from Hudson News might push me over the brink. So I got to Newark hoping to find some decent place to sit down and order an actual meal, and I settled on a Garden State Diner (after bypassing the scary McDonald's-dominated food court and the absurdly snooty wine bar).

After five minutes of standing awkwardly at the "Please Wait Here to Be Seated" sign, pretending to care passionately about the college baseball game score, I was seated. After about ten minutes of sitting awkwardly (we all know I hate eating alone) at my table, staring at my book instead of reading it, a waitress finally approached to take my order.

She was extra triple nice. The food was extra triple not. I ordered a Chicken Ceasar Salad Wrap, and the chicken tasted like it had been sitting out for a few weeks. Although they sounded great on the menu, the "homemade potato crisps" that came with the wrap were all see-through and soggy with grease.

I left a decent tip for the waitress because she was the only nice part of my dismal dining experience, but almost passed out in frustration when I approached the counter to pay and the cashier ignored me until he could finish sending his text. Unless he had an imaginary wife who was about to have a baby, I just didn't see why the text couldn't wait the thirty seconds it would take to look up, smile, take my money, and let me go.

The problem with airport food is this: it's rarely fresh, it's too expensive, and the nature of serving food to airport folk dictates that the people who serve it will be jaded within five minutes of getting to work every day.

I'd love to bring my own food, but I've tried that before and been forced to either scarf it in front of the security guard or throw it away. No thanks.

Good thing I'll be in San Diego tonight, where the Mexican food is almost as good as...being in Mexico.


  1. You are so close to me! You should have tried the Applebee's - still gross, but probably better than stale diner food.
    Also, I'm really sad that bringing your own food has ended so poorly for you in the past, because I do it ALL THE TIME. Peanut butter sandwiches, granola bars, and apples are my staples.
    Good luck in SD and eat some Mexican food for me!

  2. airport food , airline food - hate it all!
    enjoy the mexican food ;-)