While I was in the middle of writing an entry about this experience I had in high school, I got an email from a friend about “The Top 21 Waiter Moments”. For someone that gets distracted easily, I naturally put that entry on hold and started working on another one. I opted to write about an incident relayed to me by my brother which I felt should have been part of that email.
There’s this restaurant back home that I really love going to. They serve really delicious food, with fresh ingredients and laid back and homey ambience not to mention how inexpensive it was to dine there. It’s no wonder that it has been in business for so long now with an extensive clientele . It is safe to say that it is one of the best, if not the best restaurant in our city.
Being a Filipino restaurant with homey ambience, it was just natural that it developed a tradition that guests eat with their bare hands just like what most Filipinos do when they eat at home. However, if you are not Filipino and find it a little too primitive or probably if you are Filipino and just did not want to ruin your manicure, they would serve utensils upon request.
A couple of years back, a friend of my brother visited the city for some R and R. He then asked my brother if he can show him around. My brother agreed and created an itinerary for his friend. He then decided to make this restaurant their first stop to let him try some of our local cuisine. Like most visitors from the north, seeing how cheap the seafood was, he ordered almost all seafood dishes in the menu. From appetizers, soups, side dish, main dish and if there was even a seafood dessert he would have ordered too. My brother then told him about the tradition in the restaurant.
“But if you prefer to eat with spoon and fork, we can request for it,” my brother added as he was about to wave to the waiter to request for utensils.
“No, no. Mas masarap kumain nang nakakamay,” he interjected.
So he went on to wash his hands and just as he returned to the table the food was being served. When the waiter was about to leave, he saw that there were utensils placed on the table.
He called out the waiter, gathered all utensils and handed them to the waiter saying, “Kuya, hindi na kailangan nito. We’ll eat with our hands.”
He added with a smart-aleck tone, “Hindi ba kamayan dito? Kakamayin na lang namin.”
The waiter replied with a puzzled look, “Kahit yung soup sir?”