Where are the sandwiches of yesteryear?

Gone, obviously, since why else would I be asking?

To the SOH on Saturday to hear the SSO.  More of that, possibly, later.

I neglected to mention that on my last trip to the opera, a bar code on my ticket was electronically scanned. I don’t like it. It is Orwellian, uncivil and vulgar. Now the regime of scanning tickets with hand-held devices has spread to the Concert Hall.

It’s all been downhill at the Opera House since 2003 and the “No War” protest.  Elaborate fences went up to prevent a repetition.  Along the way, the cheerful pleasure of sliding down the angled panels has been proscribed.  More tiresomely, the agreeable possibility when at the Concert Hall of checking out the show next door from the foyer monitors is no more. No longer can one approach either of the two main halls by their front entrances from the upper level of the podium.  So much for the Aztec temple conceit.

Past the scanners and up the stairs I discovered the catering concession for the foyers has changed hands.  It’s a bit of a wrench – if only because at a stroke I have lost my status as known customer, acquired over many years.  Had I known the old management were leaving, I would certainly have said goodbye and thank-you.

With a new concessionaire come new staff.  I suppose it is just bad luck for the old ones, some of whom have been there for years. That’s the human cost of “disruption” (as the buzz word now is).

Another human cost for me is that the new management obviously has a different taste in bar staff.

And a different taste in sandwiches.

These have undergone some changes over the years, but the basic pattern – vegetarian or not, and if not, ham and cheese, beef, chicken and smoked salmon – seemed almost timeless, until it wasn’t.

Had I known these were going off the menu I would also have eaten my last set of (non-vegetarian) sandwiches with more ceremony.


4 Responses to “Where are the sandwiches of yesteryear?”

  1. wanderer Says:

    And and and you can no longer buy alcohol at the food counter but need to lug the food to the grog bar or vice versa. And and and I loathe the rearranging of the main foyer – the lovely little crowded coffee bar now a void where tour groups meet in the day, like there’s no where else for that, and the Cafe Mozart robbed of its charming cafeteria buzz where you could see the (Guillaume!!) food and mix and match. I blame Ms L H for that, and anything else I can think of.

    There was no scanning on Friday. What’s the point anyway – what’s being monitored?

    Yet for all that, i was yet again stunned as we walked to the House – the forecourt thankfully and finally cleared of the rotten clutter and the vast great space leading to the podium a beautiful thing in itself. But but but they didn’t manage to get all vehicles underground, where the audience drop off and taxi stand should surely have been.

    • marcellous Says:

      What’s being monitored? Why, you! But I agree, what’s the point? Other venues and rock concerts have had scanning for years but when the seating is numbered and given the SSO’s audience the necessity seems slight. I think it is just one of those things they do because they can: a kind of officiousness really. That’s part of why I don’t like it. Maybe someone sold the system to them. I suspect the new configuration involves some sort of staffing economy.

      On Sat the escalator (not that you approve of that) up to the foyer was also out of order.

      Maybe we have to allow for adjustments with the catering – also coffee now only at the coffee/food bar and a sole water dispenser (one of those levered taps) which you have to reach over the counter to get, so that everyone is queueing for a single (free) water spot. A single iced jug was put out later but it still involved lining up to essentially the same spot.

      Colder weather on Sat plus the new sports-stadium style lighting illuminated a great plume of industrial steam emerging from the car park ventilation.

  2. travellingmezzo Says:

    I so agree about the sandwiches and the bread is twice as thick as it was. And the snacks are all dribbly leaky things! How to stuff up a venue!

    • marcellous Says:

      TM: I had a look at the sandwiches last night but did not sample any. Bread looks a bit thicker but chicken and walnut combination potentially tempting. Possibly carries a higher spill/drop risk.

      I still miss the old cast of waitpeople. New cast is a quite different mix of people.

      I keep an open mind at this stage on the new regime. The main point of my post was that an institution has quietly and without warning disappeared. Such occasions expose one’s knee-jerk aversion to change

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