*Inspired by true events*
Last Thursday at 1pm I went for lunch with two of my work mates. We had a short conversation on where we would go. No one wanted to be too pushy, I had a chicken fillet roll in mind but didn't want to show my hand, lest my rustic taste in food become a source of ridicule.
After some hand wringing one of my associates suggested Boojum. Boojum. The name bounced around my head. Without thinking I said "Yeah, sounds good".
We strolled up Abbey street and crossed the Luas tracks. There it was. Boojum. In it's aqua blue finery. I took a deep a breath and entered the premises. That's when the panic set in.
Scores of millenials and yo-pros, as far as the eye could see, feasting on various Mexican dishes. I looked over at the counter. There was a queue that tailed back all the way to the exit. Busy, busy, busy.
I caught myself, took a few deep breaths. At least I had ample time to pick out a meal. Or so I thought.
The queue disappeared in a matter of minutes, and the closer I got to the counter, the more confused I became. They seemed to be operating on some sort of carvery system, but there was no beef nor salmon to be seen.
There also seemed to be at least fifty people working behind the counter and they all seemed to be asking me a question at the same time.
What did I want? I hadn't a fucking clue. I took a look at the board. Burritos, Tacos, Bowls. Bowls of what? These Mexicans were very foggy on specifics.
I asked my coworker what she was getting, she said a burrito. I said I'd get one too, feigning familiarity.
The first of many servers posed the question, "What would you like sir?" "One burrito please". "Cool". Everything was moving so fast. "What meat would you like?" "Chicken", I blurted out. The server placed what looked like a pancake into a George Foreman. I looked down at the salad bar, a brief respite.
I looked at the options. I saw some sweetcorn, a familiar friend. Everything else was alien. Several types of rice. I was under the impression there was only one type: white. There were also several trays what looked like mucky soup and various vegetables that all blurred into one. I felt a bead of sweat roll down my temple.
"What salsa would you like?" I reached back in the archives of my mind. Salsa, it's a type of dance, no? The people behind me in the queue were losing patience, I needed to say something."Sure whatever you think yourself" there were audible scoffs. What an utter dickhead they must think I am.
I shuffled along the queue. Another server accosted me:"What beans would you like?"."Baked" I replied. Cue laughter from the entire establishment. I laughed along, nervously. "I'll give you Pinto beans". He could have given me arsenic and I would've agreed, such was my wish to end this ordeal.
He handed my burrito to the next server. "What else would you like?" I felt something dripping on my lip, my nose was bleeding. What else is there? Ketchup, brown sauce... would I like it cut in half? I felt dizzy.
Then I remembered, "Sweetcorn, sweetcorn there please, love". My heart was pounding in my chest, but I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. Suddenly, I got a rush of blood to the head. "Sure give me all the trimmings, I've a fierce hunger". She shot me a weird look. That was too cocky. I duly got back in my box.
She and the rest of the fifty servers stuffed the burrito until it barely closed, It took three able bodied staff members to wrap the foil around it. I was sure that if the burrito fell on the floor, it would explode killing the majority of staff and customers. I waited, hoping the worst was over with.
Finally, the girl operating the register rang up my order. "Are you a student?" "No, I said resoundingly". "Alright, that'll be €12.50 all together".
That's when I fainted.
By the time I woke up my debit card had already been tapped and my work mates were nowhere to be seen. I was left outside Boojum with my burrito, but my dignity was long gone, lost in the heady melee of ordering a Boojum.
I stood up, dusted myself off and dumped the burrito in the nearest bin.
My stomach groaned, and maybe I was still light headed from the Boojum fiasco, but I'm almost certain it grumbled 'Spar'. I duly obliged.