Thursday, April 25, 2013

V--Vegetarians and Vegans

Read on Twitter -
Q-How do you recognise a vegetarian / vegan at a party?
A-Wait for five minutes,he will come and tell you on his own.

A man seated for dinner in a restaurant, opens his bag, retrieves two big packs of ready to eat meals,calls the waiter and spends the next ten minutes instructing him on how to assemble it. A confused waiter flips the pack and reads the simple instructions,nods and walks towards the kitchen. Five minutes later,the guest starts fiddling with the cutlery,drops a couple of them, makes some more noises with the crockery and casts furtive glances in the direction of  the kitchen. Finally ,unable to contain his restlessness,he walks towards the kitchen,opens the door and enters it. Seconds later,he is ushered out by the polite waiter. He stares at the door ,paces a few times and then stands on his toes to peep through the looking glass inside. While looking,his expressions change, he moves his head side to side and his palm meets his forehead. He looked as if he was doomed .He walked like a defeated man towards his table and sat down with slumped shoulders. The waiter served his food in a while and the man spoke to him for some time telling him how exactly the food was to be served. I saw him eat his two bowls of Rajma-Chawal  in silence .He then walked towards the dessert counter at the pre arranged buffet of the restaurant .He prodded each dish with a fork,disgust writ large on his expressions. He made faces at the texture of the dishes and finally picked a few fruits before walking out.
He was later seen taking a brisk walk by the poolside, talking loudly on his phone. He spoke about how the waiter used microwave oven to heat his Rajma rather than boiling it in a pan.The dish was too hot for his liking. How rice was not soft and was giving him gases and that is why he was out by the poolside, walking. He was digging his gums  with a tooth pick ,which  was expected to do the work of a shovel. 
Did I imagine, earlier at dinner  or did the same waiter's gaze linger a wee bit longer at me when he realised that I was a vegetarian too. My plate was full with delicious local food ,chosen by me from the variety of food on display.
Scene 2
There was a little agitation in the lobby of the hotel with a large group of travellers arguing with the tour operator about jalebi not being served the night before for dinner. The eggless pastries were not relished by the group and the Gulab Jamuns were too dry for their liking. Someone remarked that the whole excursion was a flop because of the missing Jalebis.
Scene 3
In a wine and food appreciation meet for bloggers,I was  seated next to a lady who proudly stated that she was a vegan. Well nothing unusual about that but the way she manipulated the servings , sent the organisers on guilt trips ,had to be seen to be believed.The harassed team had a tough time  keeping up with her  demands and the fellow bloggers could not understand her contempt for their food choices.

Decades ago,on my first overseas trip,I survived on bread and fries from McDonalds .After having salads and fries for three weeks, the sight and smell of McDonalds was enough to put me off food. Those days, there was no internet ,no awareness and limited resources to indulge in the luxury of vegetarianism in a foreign land . I hated the idea of carrying theplas ( spiced flat bread) but I did,for emergencies ,while continuing my search of vegetarian food locally. With the internet, things are much easier now for vegetarians.One can research local vegetarian fare and locate diners serving veg food in the vicinity of their stay and even order Indian food in the comfort of the hotel room. I have done all. I however prefer to experiment with local veg fare as far as possible.
Staying in apartment suits also helps the cause if one doesn't mind cooking on a vacation. I do take once in a while but prefer not to cook as far as possible. 
  So ,how particular are you about your food choices when you are away from home .Is food so important that if you do not have it your way,there  can not be any other way ?

A sneak peak into what I ate...on my recent trip...
The biggest tray and vegetarian spread on the right (egg was passed on to the family) with apple tea for breakfast.
Something to start with...before the lunch gets ready...

 Mushrooms and choice of veggies served with sticky rice and potato on the side.



  1. Such guests give a new meaning to Hospitality. The pics look delicious. Apple tea, especially!

    I am quite fine with vegetarians until they don't criticize my food choices. But, sometimes, some of them have this holier-than-thou attitude that's unbearable.

  2. My husband is vegetarian while I am not. We too like sampling different local cuisine when we are traveling. Luckily for him, there is always a Subway when all else fails! :)

  3. I have watched quietly your no-fuss approach to making sure you get vegetarian food without being loud about it.
    I don't mind people being particular about their food, until they make a big racket about it. I think then that it starts to get rude. Also, I'm not sure why we can't experiment with the local vegetarian fare - if you need food that tastes exactly as it does at home - stay at home! ;)

  4. Familiar with scene 3. You know, I am particular about food, one trip abroad will set me right. I love your breakfast spread...especially the apple tea.

  5. Have seen that the vegetarians are very fussy about food outside. And they surely know how to create a ruckus over food anytime and anywhere! My thought is that if you are so particular about food, carry your own food or better don't eat out and experimenting or trying something new is certainly not in their dictionary! The food has to meet their "ghar ka khana" specifications!

  6. Totally non fussy I am.....I mean I will not eat certain thigns but I can survive on basics!! And I am veg but no qualms about it....for me it is a way of life...part of me...



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...