“So what makes salad, salad?” Bren and I pondered this precise question at a cheap little pizzeria near home. Having managed to wrangle an impromptu Date Night (thanks, Granddad!) we dragged our slightly exhausted, moderately disheveled and ravenously hungry bodies into the night. In we ambled, hoping for little more than speedy service and slightly-above-average pizza. We decided on a roast pumpkin and fetta pizza with an ‘Italian Garden Salad’. We gave our order to the friendly waiter. We settled in and waited.
After 40 minutes of waiting we realised we were fighting a losing battle. Despite our best intentions, we began turning on each other. Date Night was in danger of getting physical in all the wrong ways. It didn’t help that a table of about 572 public servants wandered in about 20 minutes after us, yet managed to get fed first. Feathers were ruffled. Mostly mine.
To the rescue came a smiling waitress … but wait? Where’s our food? Ahhh… lost in translation, apparently. There was a computer malfunction and our order was ‘lost’. What wasn’t lost on me was that she didn’t offer any restitution, but simply re-took our order and toddled off to arrange its hasty preparation. Actually, she didn’t even promise ‘hasty’. That was just my nutrient-deprived brain cruising past ‘stabby’ and straight onto ‘deluded’.
Thankfully, the waitress reappeared within 5 minutes brandishing an Italian Garden Salad. I’ve never been in an Italian Garden so I’m in no position to judge – but Italians, you’re doing it wrong! Imagine if you will, a bowl the size of your head filled halfway with salad leaves and precisely three (3) tomato wedges, two (2) cucumber slices and two (2) olives. I should’ve taken a photo but, sadly, it was inhaled before the phone made it out of my handbag.
Thankfully the pizza arrived shortly thereafter, sufficiently dotted with pumpkin to assure me that the Italians are more forthcoming with pizza toppings than salad vegetables. We polished it off as quickly as we could without looking like we would be more suited to a trough, and set out to pay the bill.
Naturally, we were asked the million dollar question: “How did you enjoy your meal?” The manager was incredulous when we said that the salad was a slight disappointment.
“I don’t think so,” he said “We count the olives carefully; you couldn’t possibly have only got two.”
I’m happy to report that not only are we still blissfully married but we still indulge in the occasional Date Night too. Next time, though, I’m ordering a Greek Salad instead. Call me opportunistic, but the way their economy’s going I reckon I could afford my body weight in kalamatas.
Have you ever been disappointed with the service you have received? Do you tell the truth when someone asks if you enjoyed your meal or do you lie? Have you ever had food get lost in translation?
Karen has written 5 posts.
Sometimes I’m just Karen. But mostly I’m his wife, their mum or that person banging on about footy or uni or food or the decline of modern civilisation. Karen blogs here.
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