Working by yourself demands serious dedication. When you look around your office and notice everyone else working away, tapping up emails and ticking off boxes, highlighting things done from a list, think of the weary freelancer. I look up from my desk and I see the spot on the wall than needs a bit of Jiff. I look up from my computer and I may as well put on a quick wash, make a coffee, get a snack, flick through that gorgeous new cookbook, do a blog post.
In a bid to be normal, once every now and then I do a work lunch, I pop into the city and I wear shoes (not my usual office attire… flip-flops), I meet a friend or my gentleman, and we eat commuter workish things. We go somewhere different every time and I soak it up like some crazed lonely-girl – happily blissed out by the one-hour limit. I eat out all the time for dinner, there’s barely an evening not spent exploring some new place with some new person or old friend. But lunch, work lunch, is different. It’s snacky and light, and there’s no alcohol slowing us down.
Case in point, Din Tai Fung in Sydney Westfield. I went to the one in Hong Kong this year and was bowled over by those miraculous little xiao long bao. Thin noodle encases a fragrant broth, a firm pillow of pork floating within. The trick is to hold the dumpling in your spoon, pierce it with a chopstick, then drink it up in one mouthful. A mild vinegar soy sauce and some chilli-spiked oil are worthwhile additions. So we had just a steamer each of these, chatting about work stuff and the daily grind, the hours oh the hours… And then we bid our good days and head back to the dreary office at home.