Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Death by Buffet





Just when I was about to say cheers to lost weight, a 3N/4D vacation ensured that I found more than I lost - the weight that is. Amazing, rather exasperating, how a short outing can tilt scales in ways you never imagined.

After a long flight, you take a quick shower and saunter into the hotel restaurant to occupy the window seat overlooking the sun-kissed mountains. At a time when you are normally tending the door, waiting for the maid, packing lunch and ordering groceries, this is heaven. Never relaxed so much at breakfast time and you are so happy that you could cry. You soak in the atmosphere and fetch up to take a look at what’s on offer. Most buffet spreads are an assortment of Indian, Mediterranean and Continental delicacies served to challenge your midriff. For reasons unknown, even the oatmeal and sugar free porridge which seem puke-worthy at home invite you with healthy hush – come savor me. The boiled eggs and omelette you find mundane back home begin to croon, ‘Is it me you are looking for’. The stuffed paranthas look at you in all their oily glory and hum softly, 'pick me baby one more time'. The wide arrays of chutneys next to steaming idlis wink at you. The aroma from baked beans and grilled potatoes sautéed with parsely nudges you – try me. The cold cuts beckon, the stir fried veggies whisper, 'Sweetie, we have it all - carotenes, free radicals, fibre, try us no?' The little gateaux’s begin to waltz around your nose even as the creamy fondant plays hide and seek from behind the slim, crisp, hot and curvy jalebis melting you to mush. Yes, jalebis, miles away from home. 

When you are debating difficult choices, the steward approaches, “Should I toast brown bread or multigrain bread for you?” You look so profound and thoughtful as if you are attending the G20 summit and wondering whether to vote in favour of the climate deal or go the Trump way. Back home, your toaster is a breeding ground for cockroaches but toasting, popping and smothering bread with dollops of butter is suddenly comforting. Almost calming. You are tempted to try every brownie, bun and bread with jams and marmalades of every flavour. 

There are other multiple choice dilemmas, ‘Mam watermelon, mixed or orange juice? Sparkling, mineral or regular water? Green, regular or masala tea?’ You are tempted to make the most because eventually you are destined to fall back in the arms of muesli and cold milk. But you summon all the self-control at your disposal and count backwards. 10, 9, 8… 

The steward hovers around your table with an assortment of maple syrup coated pancakes and juiciest falafel in town, here try some, we’ve used herbs from our garden and you won’t get this anywhere. 
There is laughter in the air, the beautiful couple next to you is relishing their scrambled eggs, their kids are jumping like dolphins and everyone’s so excited that you surrender. 
Given that breakfasts are included in your room rent, you decide to land a delicious kick on the hotel’s rear by recovering every penny.

After all, what is one day of cheating? 

The following day is worse. You head out for a long drive, you are not sure if you’ll stop for lunch so you stuff enough to last for dinner. Eventually, you have lunch, snacks, beer, dinner. The last day is the worst. You are about to check-out, you haven’t vasoolo-ed the room rent and the next vacation is a tiny blip on the radar. So you say, what the heck, I will shed the darn kilos again. Then the three day buffet breakfast takes three months to leave your midriff, if at all. But that’s what life is – diet, work, save, travel, repeat. Even if it means death by buffet.





35 comments:

  1. Alka, your post made me hungry!

    To be honest, I'm not a fan of hotel breakfast spreads. You end up eating double the quantity and three days later when you are still at the hotel, your head screams NO MORE, but your tum has other ideas.

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    1. True, which is why I love them like I hate them.D

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  2. Buffets offer a huge variety but I always go for the familiar items-the tried and tested ones.

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    1. I love to experiment with the salads and greens.

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  3. Lol... I feel you too... Been long time. Hope you're doing great!!! ;)

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    1. Hi, long time yes. With all the Hindu Muslim going around, one has to divert the mind to food :)
      Always good to see you here.

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  4. You are right, even boring old oats look good at buffet brealfasts and we always end up eating more than we normally do. And some of us stuff fruit n crossoints in our handbag too .. in case we feel peckish later ����

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    1. I thought it was an Indian thing until I saw a firang pick up muffins D

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  5. I pack myself with a big plate of goodies not because it is free but to sustain a late light lunch.

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  6. Alka, I enjoyed that mouthwatering article thoroughly. especially the way you made the delicacies almost sing. We all tend to eat well when we have such an array laid out. Buffets are oh-so-tempting. Kudos! :)

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    1. Thank you Deepti, glad you relished it.

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  7. Did you follow me on the weekend or what? Trust me, we went on a road trip after a couple of years and the hotel hunt was for rooms with breakfast. Of course, we don't have as much choice as you mentioned in your post still the kids would love....free breakfast ..lol...and am sure those 2 days of breakfast is one of the reasons of all the extra pounds I put on. But right now, your endless list of food is making me crave for some :)

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    1. Haha, hope you had good vacation. For me, more than variety and free breakfast, it's about being served. Not entering the kitchen at breakfast time :)

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  8. hehe Bang on! There is something so enticing about so much variety that Indian, Continental, Mexican, Thai bring them on. :)

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  9. For a lazy bum like me, being served at 6am is the main attraction.And the variety, of course.

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  10. :) ha ha ha ha ha Oh boy .. save on LUNCH eat a lot to make sure to fill up for Lunch tooooo :) that is ME he he he he

    I had a good laugh THANK YOU SO MUCHHHHHHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhh

    Bikram's

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    1. Bikram, such a joy to see you here. Thank you. I'm so glad you enjoyed.

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  11. Ha ha. Those are the pitfalls of a short holiday where splurging of all kinds take precedence! I sincerely doubt you would have gained an inch from what little I know:) However, you ignited the hunger pangs with this lip smacking post!

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    1. Being a frequent traveller, you would know. Where are you traveling next?
      On a personal note, hope your lovely wife and daughter are doing well. Always good to see you here Rahul.

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  12. I am a big Buffet fan. Most of the time I don't know what to order :D.

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  13. He he we did exactly that on our vacations. When you have so much of variety and that too complimentary, why not splurge ;)
    A good write up.

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    1. Thanks Vandana, good to see you here.

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  14. I sort of like and loathe the buffet at the same time.
    Like it because of the sheer variety and I become a little child spoilt for options.
    Loathe because, I feel bloated like a balloon immediately after eating at one.

    But oh well. It's better to have choice than none at all :D

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    1. Right, it's a love hate thing. Bring it on, I say.

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  15. Loved it till the last crumb! I don't care for the inches adding on (and so veering towards the plus size) as last night as I don't wake up doing mental Calisthenics with what sits in the fridge.

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  16. Been there. Done thought. All over the world. When we are on vacation, we should never worry about weight gain and calories. Enjoy the life fullest. We can worry about them when we come back to real life. Also, these are not "free". Already included in your hotel bill.

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  17. Thank you, true about enjoying life in the moment.

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  18. Haha.. Very well written Alka ! You nailed it. That's why we all put on some extra kilos after every vacation.And you really made me hungry too !

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    1. Apologies for late response. So glad you liked it. Thanks, Asha.

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  19. Lovely and so true! Usually, these complimentary breakfast buffets are all variety and no swaad. So often, I end up binge eating in the anticipation that the next dish I try would be good. And before I know it, my tummy feels like a hot air balloon and my hubby teasing me, "Kuch kami reh gayi hai to thoda ur kha lo!"

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