Act III: Not all chain stores are evil

Here’s what I saw in front of the Apple Store on Regents Street.

I hate to dismiss any chain store as evil, but this was kind of ridiculous.  I wasn’t sure what was going on, but  all these people were waiting to just get into the Apple Store.  Thankfully I had visited the Apple Store the day before and only had to endure its lack of air conditioning and the long checkout line.

London, however, has some amazing chain stores that I heartily welcome.  I can’t tell you how many times the ubiquitous sandwich shop Pret a Manager has saved my life.  It’s such a shame they don’t have any stores in the U.S outside of New York.  They provide students, busy professionals and travelers on a budget with French baguette style sandwiches, tasty salads, desserts, pastries and coffee at very reasonable prices.  Pret a Manager is my beacon for economic yet completely fulfilling meals and they recycle like crazy.  It’s weird to wax poetic about a chain store, isn’t it? 

Last year, in London Heathrow Airport, I made a mad dash for the Pret a Manger in Terminal One when my stomach was running on empty.  After inhaling a sandwich, I turned to my friend and said “I’m going to get another sandwich in case I get hungry again on the plane.”  I’ve never pursued a sandwich with such conviction and determination.   You really have to try these sandwiches.  Their crayfish and rocket sandwich tastes like heaven shoved between two slices of whole wheat bread.

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3 responses to “Act III: Not all chain stores are evil

  1. I think they just opened one in Chicago. There may be hope!

  2. That second sandwich that you bought saved my life on that flight from London to Nairobi at 4 in the morning. Thank goodness you went back.

  3. I also really enjoy Caffe Nero when I’m in England. Since I’ve gone gluten free, I have no idea what I’d be able to get there next time…ice water?

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