“I guess it’s a small town ‘thing'”

“Do you want ketchup for your soup?”, asks the young woman as she serves the large bowls of chicken noodle soup, the ‘starters’ for Robyn’s and my lunch.

“Pardon me?”, I ask.

“Do you want ketchup?  For your chicken noodle soup?”

“For my soup?”

“Yes.  For your soup.  Do you want ketchup for your chicken noodle soup?”, she asks patiently, for the third time.

Robyn and I must have dumb looks on our faces.  We’re still trying to figure out why she’s offering to bring ketchup for our chicken noodle soup which is served with the ‘Swiss’ Chicken lunch ‘special’ featured at the little restaurant we’ve stopped at in the small town of Calmar, just outside Edmonton.

“Really?  Ketchup for our soup?  I’ve never heard of such a thing.  But, no, thanks”, I say.

“Yeah.  A lot of people ask for ketchup for their soup.  I guess it’s a small town ‘thing’”, she explains, moving on to the next table.

“Dining” in small, Canadian prairie towns is full of surprises.  Really, I’ve never heard of anybody using ketchup as condiment for soup prior to this.  Ever.

Interesting.  And weird.

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