Monday, August 27, 2007

An Inspector Calls

There's a Chinese restaurant nearby which has become the regular place Korean Parents meet up with us for lunch. The staff are actually Chinese - and not from the 'Third Korea' of Yanbian province - so the regular highlight for me is watching Korean Father try to communicate with the waitresses and taking comfort from the fact that I'm not the only one having difficulty making myself understood. But the regular routine was broken with the arrival of health inspectors. Having seen the state of some of the cooking areas in places we've eaten I'm amazed that Korea even has such people, but in turns out there are and they proceeded to carefully look around the place, though I doubt they found a problem.

Like a lot of restaurants here, it's quite normal for leftovers to be bagged up and taken home. When the bag was brought to our table, I noticed that this particular one had a slogan in English which read "you can't fine [this restaurant] any where in the world" - which was somewhat ironic under the circumstances. Unfortunately I made the huge mistake of pointing out the error to Korean Father, who decided that he was going to let the staff know immediately. Korean Mother, my wife and I jumped up from the the table and dashed towards the door, and when it became clear from the way he was brandishing the bag that he was going to insist on explaining the matter to the maître d' as my wife paid by the exit, I left the building and waited at a place outside I considered sufficiently out of sight. The moral of the story is tell Korean Father nothing, and there are times when it's best to keep those English errors you've noticed to yourself.

Korean tags: 아버지, 영어, 식당

1 comment:

mark said...

Okay, my two stories about food sanitiation in Korea.

a) Seeing an ajjuma sitting in the hallway entrance of my officetel sitting cutting vegetables for the kimbap shop. Even though it's probably the same at most other mom and pop shops, I have now decided to never eat there.

b) Eating at a Japanese resturant, the pest control comes in. I'm pretty sure that is something that would happen in off-hours in North America, but it was just odd.

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