Sunday, 24 October 2010

The Thrill of the Chase

"You only want it because you can't have it." How many times have you heard that? Is it true that when you want something really badly it becomes significantly more desirable if you're deprived of it? It's all about the thrill of the chase, not the actual capture. Or so goes the theory. 

Some time towards the end of last year I was informed that Holland's Pies from upt' North were the bestest of all the meat pies. "No way!" I scoffed. "Cardiff's Clark's pies are the bestest pies of all the meat pies. And if you want variety, Peter's Pies come a close second." 


Placing a Clark's pie, chips, mushy peas, gravy and a bottle of Newkie Brown on your ironing board is a far more satisfying way of using it, by the way.

This battle of North vs South went on for some time before I succumbed and ordered some Holland's Pies from their website. I happened to order these pies in January, when the entire country was being battered by crippling ice storms. My bounty was delayed, but once the big thaw began the lorries started rolling out and a few days later, what I can only refer to as a perfectly chilled treasure chest of pies arrived at my office. I'll just pretend the delay was due to them being held up at Customs while crossing the English/Welsh border. 

That Steak & Kidney Pudding is still in the freezer. I don't know why I bought it. I don't like kidney. 

I had to admit it. These were some pretty delicious internet pies. Better than my usuals? Hmm. Probably. But the South still has the best pasties. At least we've agreed on that. The only problem with this method of purchasing the lovely Holland's Pies was that you had to buy a minimum of 10 per order, which ended up being nearly 20 big-ones just on pies. I mean, everyone loves a great pie, but still, it seemed like a lot. I resigned myself to the fact that if I just wanted a few of these pastry based treats, I'd either have to buy a whole load of them or go on a day-trip to the North of England.

I even slipped my brother a tenner when he spent the weekend in Chester and told him he could keep the change if he managed to find me a few pies. It was like a drug deal. Except my gear never arrived. No pies were found in Chester, which translates to "I didn't go out of my way to look or anything." His words, not my paraphrasing. Also....grmph!

Several months went by and then, as if by magic, Holland's Pies tweeted that they were going nationwide with some special Coronation Street themed pies. Wheeeeeeeee. So I waited. And waited. And waited a little bit longer. Nothing. I kept checking the stock of my local Tesco just in case my pies had finally found their way 5 hours south. I tweeted Holland's asking when I'd be able to buy them in Cardiff. No reply. Then a week and a half ago, while stuck in traffic on my way home from work.........

Photo 1Wheeeeeeeeee!

I added one pack of pies to my weekly Tesco Online delivery. Then I read a tweet announcing that Holland's were launching a national advertising campaign, so I added another pack. You know, just in case there's a sudden rush on Northen pies. Don't laugh! It could happen. A few hours later I started pondering whether they'd be as delicious as I remembered. It had been a while. If I could have them any time I wanted, would I still think they're wonderful or would the loss of that 'thrill of the chase' I mentioned earlier suck all the fun right out of them?

Photo 2MINE!

It turns out, some things are even better when you can have them all the time and Holland's Pies are one of those things. No life was sucked out of them, but in my excitement I may have burnt my mouth hoovering up the contents of a microwaved Meat & Potato pie.  I couldn't stand to wait the 45 minutes for the oven to do its work. And today I discovered that the following are now available in Cardiff.......

Photo 3
We'll just ignore that little blue tab on the left side of the product details, eh? EEEK. 

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