A Good Reason To Dislike McDonald’s

The food is fine; I’ve just had a Big Mac and fries for the first time in years and it was great. I don’t have an issue with what they sell at all as long as people don’t live off the stuff. I know some do which is very sad but the vast majority don’t and we can’t blame the likes of McDonald’s for our obese children; the issue is closer to home than that.
I came in, not for the food but for the Internet access… but I had forgotten that Italy has laws which mean that all Internet use must be logged and to access the Wi-Fi network here in the Como branch of McDonald’s I needed to provide an Italian mobile number… Bugger. I had bought my Big Mac & fries in vain… This is going to be an issue throughout Italy so expect lots of posts from me but only limited ability to respond.
The issue I do have with McDonald’s is that it is the worst place in the world to try and speak a foreign language. Most of the items on the menu never seem to be translated into the local language so when you make an order it’s a real juggling act between using English and in this case Italian. I refuse to be one of those people who just walks in to any establishment outside an English-speaking country and automatically speaks English. In Switzerland I made sure that I was able to say in German “sorry I don’t speak German, do you speak English?” and used the expression to the point of boredom.
But entering this restaurant I did try and speak Italian only to be prompted by the person next in the queue who detected that I was English-speaking because I was able to pronounce “Big Mac” perfectly! There was nothing wrong with the Italian bits of the sentence! There continued a very difficult conversation, me trying my best to speak McDonald’s Italian and being prompted from all sides by people who thought I was just another English languages dunce. Arghhh!!! Rant over… Time to go and stare at the serenity of the lake and calm down.
I meet Simone by the way tomorrow at 8.37am outside the station for our cycle to Pavia via Milan.
And the picture, if you were wondering is my view from the window of McDonald’s keeping an eye on Reggie who is fixed to the post onto other side of the street.

Categories: Cycling

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3 replies »

  1. McDonalds in Europe is WAY better tasting than Mcdonalds in the U.S. (which I vehemently boycott) I wouldn’t say the food is great though, but at least in europe the chicken is white and not brown and soggy.

    I’ve been following your blog Andrew and it’s been exciting, hopefully I will have some of the same great experiences that you have had…Keep it up!!!

  2. Lugano is indeed a very elegant place – went with Richard some years ago.(probably combined with one of his forays for Swiss Petrol). Como is of course delightful and it’s a shame you don’t have a spare day to meander lazily up the lake stopping randomly at various places then picking up the next boat as it passes. Amazing progress by the way, Andrew. Particularly enjoyed your amusing post on the waxworks at the top of St Gothard (I’ve prob spelt that wrong).

    • I am trying to do things at a leisurely pace. Reading the blog it must seem that I hurtling along but I try and stop if I see something of interest and on days like yesterday when I arrive relatively early at my destination, I just ‘chillax’…. Congratulations on your news btw; I found out just before I set off. Keep posting!

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