Have you ever munched? I rang the buzzer of this unknown flat, and when the voice at the other end said hello, I said, ‘hi it’s Eve, I’m here for… the Munch?’. Anyone standing behind me might have giggled a little, I mean, I even laughed.
For me it all began on my lunch break that very same day. I briefly glanced at Twitter and timed it perfectly to a tweet from Mo, co-founder of Munch Together. A space had opened up on a Munch that I had shown some interest in; could I make it that night? A big lover of spontaneity, I brushed aside my mundane plans for nachos on my couch and signed myself up immediately.
Did I know anybody that was going? Absolutely not. And that was what was kind of thrilling about it. I started to wonder if I should be taking anything, but that’s not really how a Munch works. Each guest pays a price to attend, so it’s all fair and nobody should feel the need to bring extra. Was I worried about safety? Not really. There was a record online of where I was going and I could see who would be attending beforehand. In a world of online dating apps and city meet-ups, this didn’t really concern me.
So I set off to Carrie’s house to enjoy her menu of comfort food at 7pm. I couldn’t keep a steady walking pace; should I be early? Should I be a few minutes late? Is it weird to arrive right on 7? I arrived bang on 7. A guest called Katy was already there, and Mo turned up a few minutes later.
Carrie’s flat was exactly as she described it; homely. Her artwork was stacked on an easel in the corner, the sitting room was tiny, and she offered us something to drink as soon as we all sat down. Conversation began to flow, and straight away I could tell I was in the company of some very cool and creative people.
So what even is a Munch? I’m not a fan of Come Dine With Me style meet-ups, and that is exactly what Munch is not. We weren’t there to pass comments on Carrie’s food, or the atmosphere or anything like that; we were there to meet new people and feel at home. And that’s exactly what happened.
I found out that Katy is right into origami! She picked up a few spare napkins and starting crafting flowers out of them. We each went home with a white rose and a patterned crane.
Mo is a conversationalist. It was great to meet him and learn about Munch, his ideas and his fear of riding horses. I still haven’t answered his question about how I feel when I eat seafood. Well, Mo, I feel disheartened; because despite my best attempts, I still struggle to swallow anything with that fishy taste without screwing up my face. Yet I really want to look sophisticated eating while eating smoked haddock and cod in a beachside villa. Maybe there will be a Munch that can help me with that one day.
And Carrie was a fantastic hostess! Great music, seriously good food and a lovely flat combined to make us feel right at home. Carrie was a brilliant source of information too. She told us about a really interesting citizen science project called Capturing our Coast, and now I’m really intrigued.
The next munch I attend (yes, I’m already signed up) will be different altogether. That’s what’s so addictive about Munch; no two gatherings are the same! As for hosting my own, I definitely will. Just you wait.
Meanwhile, I’m going to to keep joining Munches. I’m really keen for a BBQ Munch when summer comes around! Do you know I didn’t have one single BBQ last year? I was really sad. If you decide to host one, let me know!
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