Number One: STEAK!
(Written by Tam)
Michael and I had spent the first morning of our honeymoon in Tunis wandering the streets of the Medina, and grew hungry. It was about 11:30 a.m., we were still very much jet-lagged, having flown in from London the night before. We settled on streetside cafe in front of the Zeytouna, the medieval Muslim university of Tunis, that offered four kinds of couscous: fish, lamb, chicken and vegetables. The menus were in French and Arabic. We gave the waiter our order, then relaxed.
Along comes another tourist couple, speaking in German to each other. They settle in at a table next to us. The waiter hands them menus. The woman orders in French, couscous poisson, or fish couscous. However, the man first seeks to order beef, and is told they don't have it. Then he totally disregards the menu, and says in a loud, commanding tone: "STEAK". The waiter scurries over, tries his best in broken English to explain that this is a couscous joint. The man says even louder: "STEAK." He just keeps repeating this, to no avail. Finally, he just sits there, while the wife proceeds to eat her couscous.
It was an eye-opening vignette to us, to see an example of "the
ugly tourist." We were just glad they weren't Americans!
We still say STEAK! to each other from time to time, when we want beef.