Can you find a unifying language that cuts across age and income and culture?
… Yes, and the language would appear to be food. — Pam Warhurst
This evening, I was invited out for authentic Peruvian food. My friend picked me up and on the way to dinner explained that his friend had recommended this small house/’restaurant.’ He stopped the car in the middle of a small neighborhood, looked at me and said, “well…this is the address.” Slightly creeped out, I followed him around the house and hesitantly went in. We were warmly greeted by handshakes, kisses on the cheeks, and Spanish greetings.
The food was absolutely delicious — papas rellenas are Peruvian stuffed fried potatoes — ours had a combination of beef, egg, and vegetables (kinda like an empanada but encased by potato rather than bread).
It was a bizarre experience — and definitely made me realize I need to brush up on my Spanish–I’ve been reminded of this multiple times when I’ve gone out to eat with my Italian/Colombian friend — everyone assumes that he speaks Spanish (in which he is fluent) and by association, they assume I do too — yes I speak some Spanish, but it’s not always pretty… However, it was an experience. Rejuvenating. New. Did it make me a little uncomfortable? Yes, but I’m learning that stepping out of the comfort zone is just part of enjoying life.
So I accept the odd invitations. I enjoy the not so healthy food (in moderation and with longer workouts). And hopefully with Duolingo (a language app), I’ll be fluent (or closer to it) soon.
“If you really want to make a friend, go to someone’s house and eat with him… the people who give you their food give you their heart.”