L is for Lucky Moon Hotel – GOA

The following conversation took place yesterday in Panjim, the capital city of Goa, India. I am staying in a two star hotel. The staff are the nicest people ever, but the hotel sucks because the only thing that is within walking distance of is a landfill site (I’m not joking). There are no shops or houses or other hotels. It’s this hotel, a motorway and a huge dump. The smell at sunset is really something. This is a conversation between me and reception. It should be noted that there is no doubt in my mind, I am the first and maybe only foreigner in the hotel.

Me – Hello. Where is the restaurant?

Man – Sorry, sir.

Me – The restaurant.

Man –  No restaurant.

Me – Oh, OK. I want to get some food.

Man – No problem. I call. What food would you like?

Me – Call?

Man – Yes, sir.

Me – Call who?

Man – Man he makes delivery.

Me – Erm… Right….

Man – I call…

Me – Wait… Is there a menu?

Man – No menu, sir. No restaurant.

Me – OK. So, who are you calling? I don’t understand, I’m getting a bit confused.

Man – Deliver man. You tell and he brings.

Me – Like, anything.

Man – Yes, sir.

Me – Like a dairy milk, anything?

Man – What is sir?

Me – If there’s no menu, how do I know what to ask for? I can’t decide from an infinite amount of food and how much it costs and where it’s coming from.

Man – I call, sir, and you tell.

Me – OK.

 

Man dials the number and waits patiently. I notice that the phone is sitting nicely on the table and is not connected to anything.  There’s no wire at all, coming from it.

Man – Wait five minutes and I get you. Please sit under the A/C.

Me – The phone isn’t plugged in.

Man – Very good, sir.

Me – No, no, the phone, look, there’s no wire.

 

Man has no idea what I am talking about. I smile and go behind the counter and look for the wire. Man looks very confused. I can’t find the wire anywhere.

Me – Wait here for one moment.

 

I go up the stairs to my room and disconnect the phone and bring the wire down. I connect it to the phone, all the while, the man is glaring at me, like I’m being overly dramatic and a very demanding person.

Me – OK. Now you can call your friend.

Man – Very good, sir.

 

Man dials number and waits like at least 2 minutes.

Me – I don’t think he’s answering.

Man – 5 minutes, sir, and I call again.

Me – Erm, OK. Well, are you sure?

 

It should be noted that I’m generally an OK person. I don’t get aggressive when drunk, I do hangovers pretty well, and a lack of sleep just makes me dizzy more than moody. But if I’m hungry and ANYONE is in the way of making me less hungry, there is a high chance they could be killed violently by having their eyes poked out… with a spoon. Just imagine Hitler, on his period, stuck in rush hour traffic….. he’s just found out his wife is cheating on him………. And his X-Factor favorite didn’t win……… That’s how mad I can get.

But as a very wise friend once told me, India has its pace and you can’t change it or expect it to adapt to your pace. So, I just find myself accepting the most random of situations as being completely normal.

5 minutes later man knocks on my door with phone in his hand.

 

Man – Sir, you talk now.

 

I grab the phone.

Me – Hello.

Owner – Yes, sir.

Me – Hi.

Owner – Yes. Food.

Me – Yes. I want to order food.

Owner – OK. What would you like?

Me – Erm, this is a bit strange. There’s no restaurant here.

Owner – I am restaurant.

Me – Pizza?

Owner – Very good. Dominos.

Me – Grand. Pepperoni Passion with extra cheese and a coke.

Owner – Chicken pizza?

Me – No, pepperoni, please.

Owner – You are vegetarian?

Me – No.

Owner – No vegetarian pizza.

Me – Pepperoni, please.

Owner -They have chicken and beef and pork for non-veg. BBQ very good.

Me – OK.

Owner – OK?

Me – Yes. That one.

Owner – That one?

Me – Yes.

Owner – Very good.

 

No fucking clue what I ordered. It probably won’t even be a pizza and will be so spicy that I’ll have a burning arsehole for another three days (anal is illegal in India and now I know why).

So the food arrives. I eat it and go to reception and try to figure out what the hell is going on.

Me – Hello.

Owner – Hello, sir. Pizza was good.

Me – Yes, it was great.

Owner – Next time, you tell me in advance and I bring.

Me – In advance?

Owner – Yes, sir.

Me – The website of your hotel says that you have a restaurant.

Owner – No, no restaurant.

Me – And there’s no restaurant within walking distance?

Owner – No. Very far. That’s why, I get for you.

Me – I know. That was great. Thank you. Is this hotel new?

Owner – Yes. Yes.

Me – How old?

Owner – 7 years. We opened in 1997.

 

So many things wrong with the answer… I just glide on. ….

Me – Right. OK. I think you should change your website. Because it’s a little strange to phone a number and ask for anything with no menu, no price, no name…..

Owner – OK.

Me – Or, no guide.. Do you know what I mean?

Owner – This is room service…

 

Hands me a piece of paper…

Me – Yeah. You see, that’s not a room service, that’s a Dominos’ menu, isn’t it?

Owner – Yes.

Me – And they gave you that, when I ordered my pizza.

Owner – Yes.

Me – You know, you should have lots of different menus here, so people can choose.

Owner – OK. Very good, sir.

Me – And change the website. Europeans hate wrong information. We get mad.

Owner – All Europeans are like an empty mayonnaise.

He starts laughing. I start laughing. We both start laughing and having a moment of laughing together. Togetherness in laughter. But I don’t know what the hell was so funny. That comment didn’t make any sense.

 

Owner – You want dinner later. You tell me now and I get.

Me – Dinner?

Owner – Dinner is between 8 and 10.

Me – In Dominos?

Owner – Yes, sir.

Me – Why is there a set time? I don’t understand. It’s a takeaway.

Owner – That is the time, they have dinner.

Me – OK. I’m going to sleep.

 

Also, I was thinking… I’m gonna transcribe this conversation and upload it, coz it’s so weird.

 

Owner – You want same pizza?

Me – No. No. That’s not very healthy. Erm…

Owner – Here is room service, I call.

 

He gives me the Dominos’ menu and I select another pizza for 4 hours in the future because that’s just what you do here.

 

The man speaks lots of Hindi on the phone and then hands it to me.

Owner – Speak now. You tell.

Me – Hi.

Delivery woman – Order please.

Me – Deluxe Vege pizza, medium, please.

Delivery woman – With olives?

Me – Erm, does it have olives?…….. Yes…. there are olives on it……

Delivery woman – With onion?

Me – Yeah, with everything it comes with.

Delivery woman – With pepper, sir.

Me – Yeah, the Deluxe Vege pizza.

Delivery woman – Yes.

Me – I want that one. So…. Put all the correct ingredients on that one.

Delivery woman – Chicken…

Me – Is there chicken on the Deluxe Vege pizza?

Delivery woman – No. Extra.

Me – I just want the standard Deluxe Vege, please, no extras.

Delivery woman – Very good, sir. Beef?

Me – No.

Delivery woman – Pineapple?

Me – No.

 

She proceeds to list every single additional ingredient and I say ‘no’ to each one. There are about 14 of them, I reckon.

Delivery woman – Dip?

Me – Oh, do you have a garlic dip?

Delivery woman – Spicy.

Me – Sorry.

Delivery woman – Spicy, sir.

Me – Are you saying the garlic dip is spicy or do you have a spicy dip?

Delivery woman – No, garlic dip, spicy dip.

Me – I don’t want a spicy dip.

Delivery woman – You want a garlic dip, yes?

Me – Yes, please.

Delivery woman – No have.

Me – OK, bye.

Delivery woman – You have garlic bread.

Me – BYE.

 

I pass the phone back and roll my eyes. Man speaks in Hindi.

 

Owner – OK, sir. You have dinner for tonight. I call you when it arrives.

Me – Great. I’m going to sleep now, for a bit.

 

25 minutes later another pizza arrives.

Owner – This is for later, sir, I keep in fridge.

Me – OK. Great.

I officially give up.

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