13 November 2013

Goodbye Tours–Syrian House

There weren’t loads of great restaurants in the city we lived in. And there REALLY weren’t many great restaurants in our part of the city. (No great restaurants?! Probably none, if I’m honest.) But you go with what you got, right?

And what we had was Syrian House.

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A couple times we ordered delivery. And one time it came like four hours later. Nice! Trying to give directions for delivery in a place where there are no addresses in a second language is fun, too, but that’s probably a whole ‘nother post…

Anyway, the best thing about this restaurant was the Syrian bread, fatiira. It was quite comparable to flour tortillas and I bought it by then tens when they would let me, which wasn’t all the time.

The inside of the place was a bit manic. I’d have to work my way up to the front of the ordering desk. I’d order in Arabic, but the guy behind the desk wouldn’t understand me because he wasn’t expecting to hear Arabic coming out of a white face and he’d look at me all confused.

Eventually he’d understand my order of thirty pieces of bread and talk me down to twenty pieces. (Aim high, you know?) Okay, I’ll take it. (No locals order bulk bread here, just me. Everyone else orders, like, meals and stuff.)

So I’d pay and he’d hand me a couple tickets. I’d work my way through the crowd over to the counter where they serve salads. I’d give him my ticket for bread and he’d look at it confused. I’d explain in Arabic (a strange order, remember) and he’d begin counting pieces of bread. We’d chat and he (and the other ten guys behind the counter) would like the fact that I speak Arabic and that I like their bread. I always wondered in my head how many hours they had to work in that hot restaurant each day and what their living conditions must be like. (Help them, Jesus).

Eventually he’d hand me plastic bag full of fresh chewy flat bread and I’d exit the smoky hot establishment proud of my success and planning cheese quesadillas for dinner.

Aaaanyway. We’d also order whole chickens or chicken shwerma, which one friend insisted was laced with MSG. She might have been right. And their hummus was good and I’d order extra and put it in the freezer for when I was in a pinch for something to serve.

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Funny how places like this and routines like this were just a part of regular life last year. In some ways it seems so fuzzy. Like a whole different world. Like a whole different life. Like a whole different me.

Goodbye Syrian House.

Miss ya.

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