Ask for what you want, be happy with what you get
We all appreciate good customer service. I guess so. Well, well, well. When it comes to Sri Lanka…
We were eating the lunch, when I came back to the table full of expats with this spicy kari I didn’t want. After the waitress asked us about the drinks, I asked for a nonsweet tea. I’ve already gained a few kilograms and wanted to protect myself by getting rid of sugar. After 15 minutes tea was ready, however sweet as hell. My friend, actor originally from New York, moved to this island, once said:
My friend, actor originally from New York, moved to this island, just giggled and said: This is Sri Lanka. Ask for what you want, be happy with what you get.
Here are just few remarks (and possibly tips for you) I made during my life in the island regarding food and customer service:
1. It takes some time to get your food on the table. Always. Don’t shout, ask, just be patient.
2. It takes time to explain what you want, and even you do so, you will get something, which with high probability will be similar or maybe not that close to your desire.
3. If you are not a fan of spicy food, ask for not spicy version sharp. Or ask for any other non-spicy option. Otherwise, they will tell you the food is just a little spicy. Obviously, they have a different level of perception when it comes to flavors. ‘Spicy’ in their words means super spicy, like hell spicy. Be suspicious rather than burn your tongue. It happened to me at the beginning of my travels many times…
4. If they say something is little sweet, it will be most probably over-sugared. Especially coffee and tea with milk. They love to make it sweet as hell.
5. 98% Sri Lankans eat with their hands. Actually with only one – right. Be careful, the second one is for something else (to do your business, you know). When it comes to western style restaurants, of course, you’ll get your fork and knife. But for those, who want to blend into Sri Lanka and follow that lifestyle, roll up your sleeves and go wash your hands.
6. And the most important, don’t get angry. The most probably it won’t change anything. Just ask for what you wan and be happy with what you get. Sri Lanka is not that colorful when it comes to food as Thailand for example, but still, there is a lot to explore. As I did drink fresh coconuts a lot, which you can buy cheaply anywhere on the market or even on the streets. Cheers!