Over the weekend, I visited a local restaurant serving a potpourri of Asian food. If you been to a Chinese buffet already, then you know what I am talking. The restaurant has a similar theme; the difference is in the spread that belongs to a couple of regions in Asia instead of sticking to Chinese items alone. The wait times are long in this restaurant, but they turn their tables very quickly. They can turn tables quickly because they have a lot of tables. The restaurant has a seating capacity like a stadium. Even though it I am exaggerating with the similarity to a stadium, it is a dining hall and not a restaurant. Keeping aside the food, it is the waiters and waitresses that caught my eyes.
For an Asian restaurant, I expected a lot of Asian faces among the crew. You may call me prejudiced. Although I scanned the crew, I could see very few locals; the few locals carried the tag displaying "Trainee". The trainees looked like a rush job. Most of the other names and also accents indicated they were from Eastern side of Europe. This finding was amusing for me because a couple of days back we went on a team lunch to an Italian restaurant. Diwali is long past, but the pain of organizing a Diwali lunch fell on my overburdened shoulders. Based on everyone's calendar, last week was the only time when all of us are not on vacation or training. Why Italian for an Indian occasion? If that is your question, don't you know Indians and Italians go a long way? 1972 to be exact; Godfather released in 1972 and we all are ardent fans of this movie. That is our Italian connection.
I called up a highly rated Italian restaurant near my work. I was happy to hear an accent at the other end. I was happier to find the accent wrapped in a beautiful voice. Like a naive person, I assumed the restaurant was run and managed by Italian immigrants who will provide authentic Italian food. All is well that ends well. The food was good. All of us had fun. The beautiful voice also turned out to be more beautiful in person with a great and perfect teeth. But she was not Italian. She was from Spain living in England because she wanted to learn English. To my Indian friends, please don't bother asking the name of the restaurant in order to teach her English. She wants to learn English and not Hinglish. To my British friends, if I had denied the pleasure to my brethren, why would I reveal the name of the restaurant to you?
If you analyze further, both the cities - where I live and where I work - are so small that I call them villages. There are still many jobs out in these small places. Then why is immigration a problem?