Thursday, January 24, 2013

You ordered hot? I ordered mild!

The very handsome Indian waiter sauntered over to our table.  His strong hands held the platter at shoulder level.   
    My mouth nearly watered as steam twisted from the vegetable curry dishes my mother and I had ordered.
    Mild curry, there's nothing quite so wonderful!  "Thees ees being a mild curry deesh for you, Ma'am," the waiter's accent entranced my mother--I swear she'll never think of an Indian telemarketer quite the same.  "With theese bee-bee carrots, onions, ceelery and peas. It ees being glazed in a perfect sauce."
    I gaped at the man, then my mother.  I tried not giggling because it WAS hysterical.  The man practically jumped from a soap opera's set.
    The restuarant's music jangled and clanged.  I closed my eyes for a moment and inhaled the scent.  To think--the entertainment made me smile--and I'd get my mild curry next!
    "And thees . . . " he said turning those chocolaty eyes on me while sliding my plate onto the table. "Thees ees your veery, veery spicy hot, hot curry."
    Now back up.  
We just went from this:

To this:

 To this!!!

    I was taken aback.  I could tell him of his error OR light my intestines on fire.  But I never correct people, so what was a girl to do?
    My fancy mother immediately cleared her throat and raised a jeweled hand.  "Ummm excussie." (Yes, that's pronounced = /ik'skyo͞oz'i/.)  "Elisa . . ." My mother twittered her eyelashes, smiling widely. "I think you ordered mild."  
    I smiled fakely, saying through suddenly gritted teeth.  "This is fine."
    "You ordered mild," she said, still smiling at me.
    "I'll try it hot." My strained face turned toward the waiter, while my eyes stayed on my mother.
    "Mild!" She suddenly said.
    "Hot!" I countered.
     The waiter's eyes bounced back and forth like balls on a pool table until he suddenly held the empty platter to his side and bent over, laughing so hard I thought he'd forget to breathe!
    "Ohh.  Ohhh," he said, gasping between throaty laughs.   "You Ameericans are beeing so funny."  He pointed toward my food.  "It's jeest mild!  I loved watching your reactions.  I jeest knew teeasing you would be fun."
    He strutted off, his mouth spread with merriment and his white teeth gleaming in contrast to dark, flawless skin.
    As soon as he left the room, my mother and I giggled over our food.  "I can't believe how I reacted," my mom said.
    "And how I reacted too!"
    She mimicked my voice then, "This is fine. This is fine."  
    We laughed about it for the rest of the night.  Before we left the restaurant, the waiter looked up from the front desk and said, "How was your veery mild curry?"
    "Just wonderful!"  I said and laughed, thinking next time I might order my food extra spicy. 

P.S. How do you react when people mess up on your order(s)? 


  1. Never as cleverly as you and your mom. Great post.

  2. Do they have takeout at that restaurant? And I don't mean the food. When somebody messes up my order, I say, Excuse me, that's not my order. And then the server takes the food away and brings back the correct order, but only after spitting in it because he had to do extra work cuz I wouldn't just eat whatever in the heck he gave me. Elvis and I celebrated his birthday last night by him getting home from work exhausted and taking a shower and going to bed after eating some scrambled eggs and ham. I sat around sick (at my house, not his) with a stuffy nose and cough. Favorite Young Man has agreed to bring me cold meds tonight -- the naughty stuff you have to ask for cuz they keep it behind the counter.


  3. Dear Elisa, I've been a vegetarian for nearly 32 years. Before that, I would have mostly done what you did--suffer the consequences of my being unwilling to contradict someone. But since becoming a vegetarian, and somewhat of a purist about that, I always make sure that my meal will have no chicken or chicken bouillon, beef or beef bouillon, fish or pork in it. I make sure that the soup is trying vegetarian vegetable and that none of the food is cooked in lard. In other words, I ask questions before ordering and so mostly the waiters are aware of my food preferences and I seldom, if ever, have any problems. And even the handsomeness of that waiter and his beguiling speech would have been as nothing next to my desire to be true to my vegetarian philosophy! But I so enjoyed reading about the dialogue between you and your mom! And I'm wondering if you and one of your children will have a similar dialogue one day! Peace.

  4. I VERY politely correct them, because I prefer to have my meal served without spit. I also try to compliment my waitperson (I love that word) on their tie, jewelry, etc. when we are first seated. I've found compliments go a long way!

  5. hahaha everyone likes to play jokes on you, too funny. I usually just make sure they know what I order, as I'll say it a few times and so far they haven't screwed up, knock on wood.

  6. You two must make for a non-stop entertainment show when in public. I can't remember it happening often, but I am like Fishducky--try to resolve nicely. Or if it will take too long, I'll just eat what was brought. Life is too short to battle over the unimportant stuff I think.

  7. This was funny. I hate to be a bother, but if it is something like this, I will try to rectify it rather than end up in the hospital with ulcers.

  8. We have large Indian and Pakistani communities here in the north of England so there are plenty of curry houses. I once had a red hot vindaloo at the Aagrah restaurant in Bradford. It seemed okay until was about half way through it. Then the heat landed on me like a burning duvet. I had to go and stand in the toilet with my forehead pressed against the cool tiles on the wall. I thought I was going to faint.

  9. I send it back, but I'm nice about it, lest I end up with someone's spit mixed in. Or worse.

  10. If he was that good-looking, I think I would have kept the hot dish, too.

  11. I think it depends on the restaurant and how hungry you are and if you trust the help. One restaurant we go to, will leave the wrong thing and bring you the right thing - say you wanted apple sauce and not potatoes, they may leave the potatoes and still bring the apple sauce. I will tell them if something is not cooked correctly.
    If McDonald's has given my husband something say with pickle and he ordered no pickle, I have called them and received that item free the next time.

  12. Well, I like hot curry. :)

    Depends on the mess up. Some are fine, others not so much.

    I try to never be impolite though. I don't like to act like a spoiled princess toward people who are working hard...I also prefer my food to not be spit in. :)

  13. If the food doesn't turn my Irish pallor livid and my green eyes red, what's the point in going out for Indian?

  14. We recently were at Buffalo Wild Wings to watch hockey game and I ordered a Chicken Wrap with Grilled chicken and Parmesean Garlic sauce, and french fries as my side. I was starving so when my order arrived I dug in to the wrap thing it was weird they gave me potato wedges instead of fries. Potato is potato so I didn't really mind. After I was done with half my wrap I noticed the sticker on my plate that said Crispy Buffalo Mild. I was like huh, thats weird because I ordered it Grilled Parmesean Garlic. I looked at the other half of the wrap and gasped. It was indeed Crispy Buffalo Mild but I was being such a piggy, inhaling my food that I didn't even notice. My fiance thought I should tell the waitress, but how could I? I was literally half way done! It obviously was delicious or I would have noticed sooner!