Bourgeoisie Toast

Ate lunch at a beautiful old spinning mill yesterday on the way home from Göteborg. The main building that once housed the factory has been repurposed and is today occupied by an assemblage of small creative companies and a handful of interior design shops – none of which I felt offered anything to write about, or, be inspired by. Not that they didn’t sell nice and fancy stuff (at premium prices). There was plenty of that.

Before arriving, I read a little about the mill’s history, the decades of suffering that both women and children were forced to endure while laboring there. Yeah, I recognize that the mill’s horrific history cast an uncomfortable shadow over my ability to find pleasure in the experience. As far as I could see, there wasn’t a single square meter of wall space dedicated to the workers that lived out their miserable lives there.

After standing in line for a while at the adjacent café, we ordered our lunch and found comfortable seating in one of the larger rooms where I marveled at the meticulously coordinated furnishings and decor. Nothing was left to chance.

There we sat, eating our yummy avocado sandwiches together with a dozen other plump, middle class, mostly middle-aged, over-dressed guests, chewing, sipping, and chatting away as carefree as can be. No social distancing. No masks. No worries. Some surely awaiting a socially acceptable opportunity to take out their shiny phones and post about their pleasant cultural adventure at the old spinning mill.

Ghosts of women and children hovering silently, a few millimeters below the ceiling. Peering. Wondering.

I don’t know. Maybe there’s too much shit going on in the world right now. Maybe I’ve filled my quota of excursions to bourgeois sanctuaries that ultimately leave me feeling emptier than when I arrived. That said, the toast above was an undeniably delightful experience – at least for the palate.