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Chocolate Chip Cookies

A Chow Pick entry reminded me of another food 'moment' that I remember with fondness.

I was flying home for the holidays and it was a hell of connecting flights (as it always was in the early days of WestJet) and weather and staffing delays (as it usually is at Christmas), and after being on planes and in airports all day, I wasn't going to make it home. They were offering two choices -- I could overnight in Calgary and catch a 6am home the next morning, or I could fly on to Vancouver that night, overnight there, and catch an 8am flight home.

Since I was already exhausted, not to mention starving as I'd eaten nothing but snack packs of nuts for about 12 hours, and kind of upset since I'd planned to be home that day, I opted to stay in Calgary. Another flight that night I didn't need, and while a 6AM airport run wasn't exactly my idea of a good time, at that point, I didn't care. Plus, 6AM in Calgary is 8AM in Toronto, so it wasn't quite as early as it sounded.

The airline agreed to put me up in a hotel as a distressed passenger, and distressed was surely the right word for it. I was on the edge of tears as I gathered my luggage and headed out to catch a shuttle to the Hilton Garden Inn.

As I got into the shuttle, the driver turned to me with a friendly smile, and asked me if I'd like a chocolate chip cookie.

If you'd asked me a minute before what I wanted most in the world, I probably would have said sleep, but as it turns out, no. Chocolate chip cookie was definitely the answer. Still warm, freshly baked chocolate chip cookie. He could have offered me a million dollars instead, and I think I'd have taken the cookie.

The Hilton Garden Inn did several other wonderful things that night that helped make one distressed passenger a whole lot less distressed (including keeping their restaurant open late to serve one last cover) but the thing I remember most is the chocolate cookie. I don't think I've ever cried over food before or since.

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