My parents have been every so wise to drill this eating mantra through our hard headed skulls when we were curious vulnerable children: “Eat as the Romans do.” Every time our family had the chance to escape the confines of our suburban Manila home on the hill and explore as far as our pockets could go, we would make sure that we ate the very food that the locals did eat. It wasn’t always necessarily a fun experience for me, especially when fish, which I am not a big fan of, was on the table.
Now that I live here in Dubai, I eat as the Dubai-nites do. But who are Dubai-nites really?
Aside from the locals, who actually only comprise of around 22% of the entire UAE population (according to the 2005 UAE Census…seriously, this is the latest data available) Dubai-nites are a collection of people from all corners of the world. There are Filipinos like me, of course, Indians, Pakistanis, Irish, Egyptians, Americans, Iranians, Brits, Iraqis, Chinese, Lebanese, Korean, Russians, Indonesians, Jamaican, South African, Ethiopian, and more. So how do I eat here? I eat as all Dubai-nites do! My eternally curious palate couldn’t be happier with the cuisines available in this melting pot of immigrants brought here from countries near and far, from cultures old and new.
That’s why I am always giddy happy and grateful to have bumped into one too many people, who are as open minded about food as I am. I love being in the Fooderati Arabia community, who have been kind to welcome my naive queries and read my (often) senseless food ramblings. I love meeting fellow Filipinos, who share the same gusto in eating as the “real locals” do and don’t mind entering food establishments where we’d be the odd men (and women) out, gaining curious stares from the patrons.
When thrown thousands of miles from home, the heightened craving for human companionship, more commonly known as loneliness, sees beyond the clothes you wear on your body, or color of the hair, eyes and skin. I don’t care whether you have the same nationality (or passport) as mine, as long as you are game for downright gritty Dubai eating adventures and lessons, I say: “Let’s go!”
So shall we?
Delirious about delicious,