Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 159

Cheesecake food porn

Cheesecake in the USA is not cheesecake as we know it in the UK.

This is American cheesecake, from the Cheesecake Factory (this place tops the list for calorie content and basic ‘food porn’):

An extreme piece of cheesecake

An extreme piece of cheesecake

This is the OREO® Dream Extreme Cheesecake and it is described thus: OREO® Cookies baked in our creamy Cheesecake with layers of fudge cake and OREO® Cookie mousse. Topped with a milk chocolate icing. (25¢ from the sale of each slice will be donated to Feeding America, the nation’s leading domestic hunger relief charity.) That’s good to know.

Want to know the calorie content of this little baby? There are 1370 calories in a 1 slice serving of Cheesecake Factory OREO Dream Extreme Cheesecake. Holy Moly!

How about that for a little extra padding round yer hips? 😉

Nice cup of tea in the USA

In direct contrast to the Cheesecake Factory, five American friends and I partook in afternoon tea in Columbia’s hidden gem, the beautiful Oakland Mills Manor. Built in 1811, the then Speaker of Maryland’s House of Delegates, Charles Sterrett Ridgely, constructed Oakland as a country home to supplement his town home in Baltimore.

What a glorious place!

What a glorious place!

A sweeping staircase!

A sweeping staircase!

And super charming it is too, with very lovely staff! If you haven’t been, people of Columbia, I urge you to go and see it!

I like a bit of afternoon tea, being a Brit and all that. How was this going to match the rather marvellous afternoon tea that me and my Brit gals had partaken in at the Montpellier Chapter (a stunning Regency building) just a week prior to my departure from England’s fair shores?

Not bad, America! In fact, super jolly scrumptious, if I may say so!

With green tea and raspberry tea FROM TEAPOTS (sorry, mum, no Earl Grey!) and a three-tiered platter of home-baked goodies, including SCONES with jam and cream, it was a triumph!

Our table for six

Our table for six

On the menu...

On the menu…

Super dooper!

Super dooper!

More tea vicar?

More tea vicar?

Joyous platter!

What a spread!

Yep, we pretty much ate it all!

Yep, we pretty much ate it all!

And for your delight….!

Americans aren’t dumb (stupid)

I agree with AA Gill in some of his recent rambling about Americans. They often get a hard time. From a touch of British snobbery or in the claws European culture vultures, Americans and America are often ripe for having swipes taken at them. Is this really fair, is it in some way deserved, or is it just tantamount to bullying and stereotyping?

Make your own mind up. Take a look at the article, and then some of the comments….it’s a fascinating debate.

State differences

I’ve said before that I don’t understand why there are so many different bloomin’ rules and laws for different states and that it all seems soooo complicated.

But now I get it. An American friend said to me that she likes to go out of Maryland to Vegas or New Orleans because the laws are more relaxed (she was referring to drinking mainly!).

Party central in New Orleans!

Party central in New Orleans!

So, when you go ‘out of state’ (I hear this a lot, like ‘out of town’ – phrases we don’t use in the UK), it’s a bit like going to another country because the states really are so, so different in law, personality and culture. So now I get it.

Walmart Wars

Today at afternoon I was in the middle of Walmart wars. And confuddled I was. Cheap and cheerful, I hear it is. Much like Tesco superstores, you can pick up anything and everything.


I have not yet been, I declared.

Not been to Walmart?! cried my American chums.

No, said I.

Then I got this from one side of the table: You have to go, you must! Put Walmart on your bucket list!

And this from the other: You are missing nothing. Don’t even go within a two-mile radius.

Walmart…..shall I or shan’t I?!

And it’s because of this photo, which I found whilst searching for Walmart imagery, I now feel truly compelled to go.

Oh my!

Oh my!

It appears that Walmart is [literally] the butt/bottom of quite a lot of jokes in the USA, which means I definitely have to go and check it, and the people who shop there, out myself!


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12 Responses to Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 159

  1. Robyn says:

    Oh my! To think I have had dinner AND cheesecake at the Cheesecake Factory before… shocking!

  2. Strawberry scones!! And ridiculously yummy truffle treats!

  3. Carol says:

    Have you tried the cheesecake from the Amish Market in Laurel?

  4. Pat and Pam says:

    Before you immerse yourself in the Walmart experience, visit this website:

  5. My (English) husband and I were married at Oakland Manor! I think you could go to walmart for the experience, my husband wanted to see it…but I don’t think it’s anythign to write home about.

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