Dinner In Two Hours.

Dinner in some parts of the world is defined differently from how we do it here and so, I start off by defining it by the meal that we have after sunset usually between 7.30 to 9.30 pm.

I stopped having dinner three years ago and have not missed having it. Before stopping, I used to have a light dinner usually around 7.30 pm but never after 9.00 pm. So, today, this topic is really not applicable to me but I go down memory lane to do justice to the topic suggested by Maria for this week’s Friday post.

For thirty one years of my life, dinner, whenever I was at home was exactly two hours after my reaching home in the evenings. I say, whenever I was home as, on an average, I used to be out of station for fourteen nights a month on tour.

Why two hours? I would come home, fix my first drink of the evening, have a short chat with my late wife about the day and go off for a shower and change to return to have my second drink and watching TV or catching up with family matters and it would be time for dinner.

After I stopped working which coincided with my becoming my wife’s caregiver, I was the cook. Her mealtimes were sacrosanct and fixed at 7.30 pm. It was usually a light TV dinner that both of us had while watching dinner in the drawing room as opposed to lunch which was in the dining room. Fixing these meals was never a chore and it would hardly take more than thirty minutes or so and therefore the old routine of two hours to dinner went out of the window.

Now, my son and daughter in love eat dinner at any time that they find convenient and it is usually left overs from the afternoon lunch, or some thing that they would send for home delivery. I would not even know when they have as, by eight pm, I would have retired to my room for the night.

This is my contribution to this week’s Friday 8 On 1 blog post topic. The other seven bloggers who write on the same topic every Friday are Maria. Sanjana, PadmumRaju, Shackman , Srinivas and Conrad.  This week’s topic was suggested by Maria. Please do go over to their respective blogs to see what they have to say on the topic. Thank you.

15 thoughts on “Dinner In Two Hours.”

  1. We called it dinner when I was a kid. Now it’s supper… I’m not sure why. As long as I can remember, we’ve had it sometime not long after 5 PM, sometimes later if I was working late. If I worked very late, I’d heat up whatever had been cooked. Even when we would go out to eat – before COVID – we’d usually arrive close to 5… and almost never had to wait until a table was available.
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    1. The British lunch/dinner debacle most amusing. English FOS (father of son) taught me, on arrival on these shores, and in no uncertain terms, that lunch was at lunch time, dinner was at dinner time. and supper was when you felt peckish after returning from the theatre. People calling lunch dinner, and dinner tea were from up North and working class. OK.

      In the motherland it’s simple. Apart from not having a class system (upper, middle, lower and the whole spectrum in between) the motherland’s lingo is precise. So, Breakfast is an “early piece”, lunch is “middle of the day eat”, let’s forget Coffee and Cake in the afternoon I believe the main reason I fled the motherland as I don’t have a sweet tooth, and come late afternoon/early evening it’s “evening bread”. And that’s the same for everyone whether you are peasant, insurance salesman or Angela Merkel running the country.

      One thing that has to be said for “in two hours” is it’s pretty precise. You can make plans if you are the one waiting. Which brings up a part amusing, part painful memory of my later childhood. It’s a mystery to me to this day: My mother knew exactly when school was out, latest 1 pm, her brood returning, say, 1.30 pm. Yet, lunch (our midday meal and in the motherland it’s a hot meal) was never ready. Yet, we were all starving. Particularly my brother. If you dared ask how LONG till we eat you had another thing coming. When will we eat, one of us asked. When it’s ready, she’d say. Myself being the eldest I was, naturally, roped in to do all the menial jobs like peeling hot potatoes (asbestos has nothing on my hands), laying the table. I won’t mention that I was also the chosen one to do the washing up AFTER for a family of six as I don’t wish to make my mother sound like a slave labourer. Come three o’clock, exhausted from one of my father’s monologues about god and the world (he worked from home, so unfortunately was a constant presence), I was ready to breathe freely. Yes, table. If there is one thing I have taken away from those interminable meals it’s eating round the table, together. No TV dinners for me – unless I am on my own and can’t be arsed to talk to myself. Eating together, round the table, so conducive to discussing, NOT monologuing (see above), god and the world. Yes, sharing bread – and thought – I love it. And, with a nod to Maria, do as you want to be done by – don’t let people wait (or sing) for their supper.


    2. When I was in elementary school, “lunch” was at a pretty rigid schedule – mine. We lived a block from school and I was able to go home every day for lunch and had to be back at a certain time. I was home for lunch when we heard that President Kennedy had been assasinated. I still remember other kids being sceptical when I told them – until it was announced to the whole school by the principal.

      (In my original comment, the first sentence should be, “We called it dinner when I was a kid.”
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  2. when I had a man in my life, we ate by his “timing” and you couldn’t deviate from it terribly much – he of British origin where the time and type is set in concrete! Sundays were always some type of roast and I was never allowed to make it because NZ standards of how it was roasted wasn’t “proper” – it actually wasn’t a meal I liked, but grudging I ate it, because I had the day off from cooking “hot chips”. Yep, nearly every day “chips”… Every day the dinner meat couldn’t be the same as the day before…He was also a child from the era of rationing and tinned foods were standard – let’s not go there…

    my meals are often dedicated by what food is inhouse and what I actually feel like eating! I might eat the exact same thing I had the day before, often leftovers reheated. Or I might just feel like sandwiches, baked beans on toast….I try to eat healthy through any day, like fruit, veg, protein & little snacks (both good and bad). If I go out – I might not eat a lot but I might decide to have a good lunch and have something real easy at night…

    One can’t always do that though, if they are “more than two” – I, on the only hand have only me to please 🙂

    1. I was indeed very much like the man in your life during my working days minus the bells and whilstles. I ate what was available as the menu was the decision of the lady of the house.

  3. As a child I had breakfast at home, dinner at school, another dinner at home at 6 o/clock when my father returned from work, and then a light supper at 8 o/clock. When I was married with a young family we had dinner at 6 o/clock but no supper. Nowadays I have a very light lunch around midday and dinner is still around 6 o/clock. I am a creature of habit!

  4. Dinner was usually Tiffin when we were growing up…Idli, dosa, adai, spring hoppers etc. With afternoon leftover rice and curds/yoghurt and pickle.
    The focus of adding veggies with everymeal came in much later when we set up our homes, kitchens and routines.

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