By Marc Algernon. I pushed through the crowd that was growing larger by the minute. I tried to make myself be seen. My stomach ached and my mouth watered as the aroma filled my nostrils. “Gimme one doubles with slight pepper!” I was beginning to get annoyed as I pushed up my hand so sure that this one was mine… Nope.
“Why them nice woman them does always get them own first, you know how long I standing here.”
If you don’t raise your voice they don’t notice you and it helps to be very visible as well, like right up under their noses that way they try to feed you and run you fast before you start making the other customers uncomfortable, or even worse, agreeing with you.
Each of the six doubles stands here in Curepe has the words “d original sauce” written on the front in bright red letters, it is so hard to tell who is authentic.
Finally, I am handed a napkin and very soon a hot sheet of grease proof paper that plates a piping hot bara which holds the most delicious combination of curried channa, tamarind sauce, pepper sauce and shadon beni sauce that four dollars can buy.
Soon my hands are dirtied as I dig right in, this is a hand food not for the cutlery folks. Grease proof paper in the garbage (we never litter) and up goes my hand again to collect another one. I am one of the club now. No longer pushing to the front of the crowd but now one of the respected “have to pay”’ customers.
“Eh, give meh some pepper with some doubles in it.” Everyone laughs. That is Broad, one of the die-hard customers. He is what you would call a “pepper mouth”. Men like Broad don’t stand in the line, he is given VIP treatment because he got the name Broad by his big and very loud mouth. He can cause a scene in seconds so it’s no playing around with him. I wish I had his courage.
I remember when doubles was only two dollars, then inflation stepped in but there was no decline in customers, always a great breakfast like I’m having now or a splendid dinner. It even acts as “cutters” if you have been drinking too much; just remember you cannot and should never eat just one.
Anyway I have to go now before I eat out all of my money and can’t afford to take a taxi to go home… again!
October 2013 – Issue 6 www.sweettntmagazine.com
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