It’s blissfully amusing how well-intentioned relatives assume you’re homesick and then proceed to ensure that your will-work-out-and-eat-healthy POA never materialises. I should know. Have been away from home a grand total of 22 days. I can unblinkingly state that my freebie meals outnumber the Bangalore pubs. Well, ok, at least counting the pubs on Residency Road.
Today my nice aunt and uncle took me to ‘Noodle Bar’ (What’s with the affinity to words associated with guzzling these days?? coffee pubs, noodle bars, whatnext??) in the newly-opened, 5-storey, just-like-yumrica mall, Bangalore Central. As soon as I walked in, I knew we weren’t taking the cheap mall meal route. Low seating, B&W photos starring from the walls, waitors who once tried their luck in Bollywood… it was deliciously pretentious. First conversation starter – the serving bowls. Yes, people, designer soup bowls have made their subtle debut on the culinary stage. To put it plainly, this one was lopsided. It sat at a 60 degree angle and the Tom Yum soup danced precariously on the lower edge. Nice Aunty looked tranfixed at the serving device and quickly told Little Cousin to use the napkin. The next confounding objet d’art at the “bar” was the menu itself. Thin noodles, gerkhins, bamboo shoots, flat pasta, mild sauce, fiery sauce … the words blurred before my eyes. It was one of those ‘Create Your Own Meal’ places where this am-I-the-only-one-who-doesn’t-get-this feeling creeps into your bloodstream. Thankfully, Nice Uncle (being the quintessential malayalee male) took charge and rattled off a combination to the ‘I want to be a VJ’ waiter. Meal arrived. We tucked in. Nice Uncle fished out wallet. And my ‘poor lil Susie in strange city’ mock adventure continues.