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Knowing the enemy

We are firm believers that when it comes to our health, fast food is the enemy. My family and I have lived in 2 European countries where burger chains are not necessarily found in every corner. My husband especially abhors anything that has to do with fast food and would only resort to going to McDonald’s when he is about to die of starvation.

So it was not surprising when, 2 years ago, the sight of the tell-tale yellow M and the colorful slide sparked an argument between our 3-year twin boys at the back seat. And it’s not what you think.

R: Look it’s M and M’s

F: No, it’s McDonald’s

M & M’s!


You got it.

Now, this ignorance on the part of our boys might be a viewed as strange, even stupid in certain cultures so we decided we should educate them and introduce them to the enemy. We had a family outing to McDonald’s. They enjoyed the play corner but not the food. It was nothing special really. Other self-service restaurants in our area have much better play things.

Fast forward two years later. We were on a European tour last June and we needed a place to stop where we would be protected from the pouring rain, where the kids can burn off some energy and where I can stretch my legs after sitting for hours behind the wheel. So I was happy to see the yellow M at the Autobahn.

My, my, McDonald’s has certainly changed. McCaf? and fresh veggie cuts were available on the menu.

After little F got tired of playing with balls, he sat next to me as I sipped my Latte and started looking at the poster ads on the walls. “One, two, three, four, five – five hotdogs,” he pointed! Hotdogs?

“Sweetie, they are hamburgers,” I whispered, while the people at the next table looked at us as if we came from another planet. Now, which galaxy did this kid grow up that he doesn?t know the difference between hotdogs and burgers?

Then, the rain stopped and the boys went for a walk with Daddy while I finished my coffee. Five minutes later, they were back, wide eyed, telling me how they saw people in cars getting their food through a window.

On the next opportunity, we went to a Mac drive thru. My, they were thrilled as their Daddy explained the process. But no, they weren’t thrilled by the food.

So now our kids are no longer ignorant. They’ve been to McDonald’s three times, and they know what hamburgers are and how drive thru restaurants work. And they weren’t impressed or addicted. They now know the enemy and they are now prepared for life.

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