Be careful what you ask for 1

Typically humans can fall into one of two groups.  Those who like to ask questions and those who don’t.  I’m definitely a question asker.  What about you?  (Haha, see what I did there?)  

Asking for what you want or need is a key life skill. 

Let me share a story with you. 

Recently I went out for lunch for my birthday.  A treat from a dear friend.

In between jumping over puddles and racing between the Fremantle shop verandas to avoid the rain we discussed where to go for lunch, deciding upon a pho soup place. 

After poring over the menu we discovered a little notepad next to the chilli sauce.   Presumably you wrote down your own order and rang the bell to have it whisked off to the kitchen.  So I wrote down our meal numbers on the slip of paper. 

My friend deciding on the Mi Kho Ga and me on the vegan pho.  I’m not vegan but just felt like something light.  Isn’t that the point of pho? 

Out came the meals, steaming hot and delicious.  We talked as only old friends can with a relaxed ease and hoed into the pho. 

About half way through though, my chopsticks delved to the bottom of the broth and pulled out what appeared to be gigantic slabs of beef.  What the…?  Whilst I am not vegan I am vegetarian and have been all my life.  This isn’t what I asked for!! 

So calling over the attendant I asked for the menu again, and checked what meal number I had written on that little pad.  Sure enough I had made a mistake in what I thought I had asked for and what I actually asked for. 

And I received EXACTLY what I had asked for.  A quick glance at the menu revealed ‘Beef & blah blah blah … soup”.  The beef part had me feeling ugh, so I didn’t even read the rest of the title. 

Pulling out the slabs of beef, I put them to the side and continued chatting to my dear friend. 

At least identifying my mistake explained why there were not many vegies in this pho.  But hey, these Chinese cabbage pieces whilst quite chewy, were something I could eat and there were lots of them. 

So continuing our conversations and finishing off as much as we wanted we proceeded to pay.  Stopping at the counter the attendant rang up the itemised list of the ordered food. 

It was only at this point did the full realisation dawn around what I had truly asked for and what I had consumed ignorantly.  He didn’t ring up “Beef pho” the full name was “Beef and tripe pho”

Oh my holy flippin’ goodness.  Urgh!!  Double urgh!!  At this point the consumed chewy Chinese cabbage was correctly identified as tripe.  As much as I wanted to distance myself from the now internalised tripe, I knew barfing in the doorway wasn’t a good look.  So I gathered as much grace as I could muster, my face now as white as the tripe and my friend contemplated asking for a bucket. 

Anyway with the bill paid, we walked out and soon were rolling in laughter at the irony. 

Only with this particular friend could a birthday lunch for a lifelong vegetarian end up with a bowl of beef & tripe soup!!   Oh dear. 


Be careful what you ask for, as the old adage goes, you might just get it.

About Jo Abraham

Jo Abraham is still working out what she wants to be when she grows up. In the meantime, she is the happy wife of one and mother of four. Presented with many life challenges, she continues to hope, believe and expect the best is yet to come. Having worked as an engineer, to now fulfilling a dream to author a book, Jo is continually on the path to wholeness and freedom. She hopes to show other women avenues of hope leading to their freedom as well. Maybe she will see you along the journey.

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