Trip Start Jan 22, 2006
156Trip End Aug 16, 2006
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Still nevermind, at least this gave us more of a chance to explore Merced more than we did yesterday. For the first time on the trip it actually feels like we've found a proper American smalltown. Even more amazing it actually has a proper high street here (although there was still the obligatory stretch of fast food outlets and malls, in case we were having withdrawal symptoms).
We ate at a nice Mexican restaurant in the Merced Mall, although once again our stomachs were a little bit surprised by the sheer scale of American meal portions. Lynne was served a chimichanga that was the size of a tyre. Whilst I foolishly ordered a "Mexican Combo" assuming that the three items that made up this item on the menu would be smaller than the individual versions of the same dishes that appeared on the menu.
That was a stupid assumption to make, the waitress could barely carry my plate out to the table and I was listening for creaking noises coming from our table for the whole meal. I could barely lift my stomach out of the chair after eating and Lynne was carrying the obligatory carry out box with her. We haven't yet had a pudding or starter since we've been in America, which is not to say that we're not getting more than our fair share of calories.
American television doesn't quite seem to know what to do with itself at the moment, now that the American Football season as finished but the Baseball season hasn't yet started. This means that the sports channels are always showing basketball matches, which owing to the fact that I was absolutely useless at this sport when I was at school, I don't enjoy watching.
The only other way for me to get a fix of sport is to watch the Winter Olympics coverage, however this comes at a price because of the annoying over the top patriotism that comes with the Olympic television shows here. They only show the events that the Amerians (sorry Team USA to give them their proper title) are expected to do well in or unexpectedly do well in. If they don't win a particular event, they quite often don't even mention who has won the gold. Obviously I am hoping this is why I haven't heard mention of an English medal in the games yet, rather than the fact that the only Winter event we have every year is not putting enough grit down on the roads every time it snows.