How not to do brunch

Apparently all people who are doing the weekend right do not wake up until past midday. Most probably because they are outrageously hungover from there wild night at some hipster club on The Bund. This sounds like my ideal of hell. I have not been to a club since NYE and I only went then because my sister dragged me there. She came to stay with me over Christmas and NY, her being a young and “free” student means her ideal weekend is throwing up green vomit and getting blisters from stupidly high heels.

I had an impulse for Mexican food so I decided to head to Maya on Sunday morning for their famous Mexican brunch. I’d seen someone eating a burrito the previous day and that’s all I could think about for the following 24 hours.

I arrived at 11.10am, they had opened at 11. I was soaked, I’d just cycled through the pouring rain and my butt was sodden with dust and mud and leaves and gross street water from my mud-guardless bike. I had not dressed for the occasion as the previous day it had been glorious sunshine and I’d actually got sunburnt. Typical english skin, any sight of sun and I’m as pink as a lobster.

The waiter greeted me and asked for my reservation. I responded with hesitation with ‘I don’t have a reservation but my friend was seated already’. It was really hard to find her through the non-existent sea of people. He led me past empty chairs and tables, crossing a waitress who nodded politely at me as she had nothing else to do. He hovered a while to pass me the menu whilst I greeted my friend and I exclaimed: “it was really hard to find you in here, I could barely see you through the crowd” .. she giggled and the waiter looked less than impressed.

After around 30 minutes the tables began to fill up, a few couples, families and friends scattering themselves around us. I quite liked the quiet, waiters were on point with taking orders, checking we were ok, quickly delivering our dishes and promptly taking payment. Everything seemed organised but not rushed. I dislike being seated so close to other people as I find myself getting distracted and people watching, listening in on others conversations or checking out peoples choice of clothing. What is better? Screaming babies and shrill laughter or eerie silence? I’m pretty sure they didn’t even have background music. If they did it was so plain jane that it left no impression on me.

My friend’s brunch was instagrammable, but instead she snapped a photo of me taking a sip of my english breakfast tea, pinky raised, imagining we were dining in NYC or London. As if Shanghai wasn’t “cool” enough for us.

Points to ponder with; brunching before noon means you skip the queues, reservations are overrated, getting up early means you get shit done.