I came the closest I ever come to a Ferrangi strop this evening.
I’m a notoriously easy going traveller, my thinking being that a small blond tourist, red faced, leaping up and down screaming incomprehensibly isn’t going to resolve any issue other than to give the locals a good laugh.
I was hungry. I’d been to Café Gutenburg, a short walk from my hotel. It’s flyblown and the staff tend to wander off mid order but it’s close and the food isn’t too bad, provided you avoid the burgers.
They’d had a power cut. The electricity was back on now but it seemed the chef had decided he wasn’t cooking. The manager threw a minor tantrum when I paid for my coffee and left (I’m clearly not paying for a meal I haven’t had!)
I hopped into a bajaj for the ‘Fresh Touch’ Restaurant, probably Harar’s current classiest (there isn’t a huge range of options) accidentally offending the driver by giving him a five instead of a ten. (What is going on with people tonight?!)
I’ve been to Fresh Touch a few times. Mostly in the quieter daytime. It’s overpriced by local standards and the food is distinctly average.
It was busy but not so busy that I should’ve had to wait an hour for a menu!
I indicated a waiter who shuffled right past me to serve some locals who had just arrived.
I stood and gestured to a waiter (politely)
I stood and gestured to a waiter (impolitely)
I stood blocking the waiter’s path and demanded a menu
Eventually I resorted to the Brit tourist staple.
“OI!!!!!!!! MENU! NOW!”
I was ignored.
If there was ANY other option at this time I’d have gone somewhere else but I wasn’t crawling back to Gutenburg.
“Manager. Right now!” This combined with one foot in the kitchen door did the trick. A few people looked up startled.
I sat back down and waited.
Outside on the pavement, a kid spotted me.
“Yooou! Yoouu! Yooou! Ferr-“
I silenced him with a glare.
A waiter shuffled up with a menu, heading for a local family a few tables from me.
Standing, I reached across and casually took it, thanking the waiter.
Just to add to my Ferranginess I ordered the American burger, fries and Harar beer.
That was an hour ago. I’m still waiting on what had better be a spectacularly sized burger.
It had better be good. I know where the kitchen is.