Aside from strong dosage of chemotherapy, part of the healing process for a cancer patient is to be always happy.
What makes me happy? Food, of course. Tons, if you may.
No wonder, I have the chubby cheeks na masarap gawing sisig.
In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the family (single ladies, families) and single (men) sections are segregated in food establishments as part of their customs and traditions.
Single men are not allowed to mingle with ladies that are not part of their family. If caught by a mutawa or religious police, the women can be charged with prostitution. Yes, mahigpit po at kaya dapat sundin.
When I got married, I had a chance to visit the more spacious family section in restaurants. The waiters are more cordial. They are trained to handle boisterous kids with a smile.
Here are some of my go-to food restaurants when I am in KSA that I frequently visit with families, friends and colleagues at work that brings back a lot of good memories and happy thoughts.
1. Piatto Italian Restaurant. This is like second home. This is where I brought my wife for our first date as a married couple. I love Italian food. Pasta & pizza overflows. The generous serving of the complimentary green salad and freshly baked bread before the main meal ang talagang babalik-balikan mo. Doon pa lang busog ka na!
2. Buffalo. Breakfast omelet. Fluffy pancakes and freshly brewed coffee. Tropa hangout – the best!
3. Ikea. Aside from home furniture, you can also have a hearty and affordable breakfast. Minsan, iyon lang talaga pupuntahan mo eh, pangalawa na lang iyong furniture shopping.
4. TGIF. Appetizer. Ambience. What can you ask for? Family place for serious talks.
5. Najd Village. For the more traditional Saudi cuisines, this is the best place to hang out. Salampak at kamayan solve na! Several welcome and maasalama (farewell) lunch out with my workmates will never be forgotten in this restaurant.
6. Texas Chicken. The muffin is the bomb. Masarap talaga! Not so sweet, just the right blend of honey glazed mini bread goodness.
Disclaimer: These establishments did not pay me to promote their business. I just love their food!
Aside from food, the lasting memories that you share with your families and friends when you are in these places makes me happy.
So how do you create a lasting memory while dining out?
1. Drop the mobile phones. Pray first before eating. Mamaya na magkuhaan ng mga photos for social media or check-in (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.). Let’s talk. Keep away those gadgets. Mag-usap tayo! Minsan na nga lang magkita eh. Don’t forget to take a souvenir photo with the whole team. Masarap yang balik-balikan.
2. Appreciate the presence of everyone. Sharing your time is a big thing for me. Be present. Enjoy the moment. This is the right time to affirm the goodness of everyone. Hindi naman plastikan! Genuinely and sincerely thank them for being with you.
3. God loves a cheerful giver. Smile. Be happy. If this is your treat, be generous. If not, appreciate the invitee. Offer to share the bill, if possible. Don’t forget to say thank you.
4. Avoid gossips. Talk about yourselves not about other people. There are more important things to talk about. If you nothing good to say to the people not around you, better shut up. Ang hirap niyan, pero makakayanan mo din.
5. Mind your own business. In KSA, privacy matters most. Some cubicles in the family section even have curtains. Don’t nitpick the group from the other table kasi wala na kayong mapagusapan.
Thank you for your time in visiting my blog.
This is part of my healing journey to look back and share my happy moments.
Have a great day! Smile!