Shopping for twaróg

No Comment - Post a comment

Just like the Irish claim that Guinness doesn't taste the same anywhere outside Ireland (and I've been assured more than once, because, apparently it doesn't travel), Japanese get parcels with miso soup and noodles posted by their mothers (Yamamori or Wagamama do not serve Japanese food), there are a few Lithuanian specialties that I have a longing for. Although as time goes by, I discover that Polish, Belorussians or Latvians claim that those specialties are in fact theirs. After all, in the 14th century Lithuania ruled Belarus (the orange is Lithuania stretching from the Baltic to the Black sea!) and then Polish ruled us and what was ours became theirs and v.v. Eastern Europe became a concoction of local cultures. No wonder Irish or English can't tell the difference between Polish and Lithuanians. Neither can I sometimes - apart from the language.

The other day I was dashing to a local Polish shop called "Samo Dobro" (Only The Best) for some twaróg which in Lithuania we call VARŠKĖ [think varshkay]. It bears some resemblance to cottage cheese (although I haven't seen Irish ever buying it), but is less salty and usually comes in one lump rather than small bits similar to, excuse me, hamster feces. Back to food :)

I entered the shop.

Dzień Dobry, said quite a pleasant guy behind the counter and I stuttered Hello. I do understand some Polish, can utter a few words, but I don't speak Polish.

I headed for twaróg section, took one and went back to the counter.

Jeden pięćdziesiąt pięć or something along those lines came out of his mouth and I could figure out it is less than two Euro. I gave him the money. He gave me the change, said dziekuje. Thanks very much, I replied to that. Do widzenia he said. Good bye, I responded.

It was a all a bit like in Jim Jarmusch's movie Down by Law where Roberto Benigni's character, an Italian tourist with zero English, is is yelling I scream you scream we all scream for ice-cream to a bunch of Americans sharing a prison cell with him in Orleans Parish Prison.

It is possible the guy could have taken me for a Polish refusing to speak Polish. But I only came for some twaróg . A Lithuanian specialty in a Polish shop.

This Post has No Comment Add your own!

Post a Comment