The sky was placid blue, sleeping in the sunshine of a perfect San Diego afternoon. It was just the kind of day for an adventure. I stepped lightly in white patent leather low-heeled shoes, clutching a fistful of my orange-cream colored dress fresh off the Wal-Mart rack. Eleven-year old me was about to have High Tea at the Hotel Del Coronado.
My sisters and my best friend at my side, mothers in tow, I waltzed into the grand lobby of the old, seaside hotel.
We each had our own tea pot, chose our own tea, and had multiple options for silverware, of which I used as few as possible.
But the highlight for me (and anyone who knows me should not be even a little surprised) was the huge stacked tray of delicious cookies, crackers and biscuits. No ordinary snacks, were they. They were laced with fresh salmon, dill whips and vegetables sliced so thinly you could have used them for printing paper. At the bottom of the tray, somewhat overshadowed, deviled eggs sat patiently waiting to be tried. Ordinary and undecorated, they were easily overlooked. Their only ornament was a berry-sized sphere of a pepper-gray hue. It looked like a tapioca ball like we use in boba tea.
My sister had already eaten one and said it tasted spicy.
“Like pepper,” said my friend’s mom.
I had the egg and it’s mystery topping half-way into my mouth when my friend asked, “What is it?”
“You don’t want to know,” said her mom.
I pulled the egg out of my gaping jaws. What was that now?
Some hem-ing and haw-ing and finally my mom explained, “It’s caviar.”
That sounded elegant. What was the problem?
“They’re fish eggs,” said my friend’s mom.
Oh. That’s the problem.