FISH KNIFE

By Diana Calaway

There we were at the luncheon table in the home of Di and Paddy, our dear friends in London.  He had arranged a tour of the UK for us, thanks to the acquisition of our North Carolina company by his firm.

We had seen Stonehenge and Canterbury Cathedral where Thomas a Beckett was murdered.  We were about to embark on a journey by train to northern Scotland to tour Balmoral Castle and see Loch Lomand among other things.  Then to watch a performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in Shakespeare’s own Stratford Upon Avon.  Years later I would pull out the papers from this dream trip and learn that the role of Oberon had been played by then young Patrick Stewart.    

But today we were enjoying a quiet lunch with Di and Paddy.  

Babbling idiotically but enthusiastically, I was describing the warnings of my neighbor who had visited England before:  “You won’t know what to do with the silverware,” she said.  “They spread it out from here to here (arms wide apart). And you may even have to deal with a fish knife.”  

Confidently, I admitted that after three whole days in England, I had not yet encountered a fish knife.

“Oh yes you have,” replied my host.  “You have just buttered your bread with one.”