Sitting in the food court at Logan airport, I noticed a man stand up, buckle his kid into a stroller, and walk away. Behind him was a big, fresh, seemingly untouched salad still sitting on the table he just vacated. A fork stood standing straight up from the center of a cucumber as a monument to the extravagance of the overpaid.
Who does such things?
People in airports do.
A vagabond can easily get a good snack by going into hawk eye mode, sitting perched in a good vantage point watching what all the fliers are bringing to their seat with them, what they do with it when there, and, most pertinently, what they leave behind. Often — perhaps because they get call for boarding their flight, the airport food did not taste good enough, indigestion, nerves over flying, or simply because they are wealthy enough to waste food — customers at airport food courts will leave good food behind, often untouched.
These people seem to have no qualms over leaving food that they pay for unconsumed. But, perhaps by force of culture, perhaps the force of guilt, rather than putting their perfectly good food into the trash, they leave it out on the tables or sit it right on top of the trash receptacles where the trays are meant to go. “Hey, I didn’t waste any food,” I can imagine the justification going. Or perhaps they just can’t be bothered to throw it out.
As I saw the salad left unattended on the table I dived in for the kill. I grabbed it, smiled, and then noticed that the receipt was also left behind. I picked that up too. Did this salad come as an unwanted part of an otherwise wanted meal, or did this guy pay for this side dish and then discard it for some unspecified reason? It was the later. $3.99 was paid for the salad that I chomped down for free.
Keep vigilance in the food courts of airports, as free meals occasionally abound.