Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Rustavi: A Dinner Out

A week or so ago, my hostess and I went for a walk on Megobroga Street in Rustavi.

We took a marshurtka home, and when we hopped off, a man who'd also been on the minibus taxi approached us and spoke in English. Somewhere in the vicinity of his 30s (I'm guessing), he learned English from his mother, who teaches English. After some chatting, "Gia" invited us to a future dinner at a local restaurant.

OK, so now fast forward to tonight. Gia and my hostess, Nino, and I took a taxi to what turned out to be a new restaurant in Rustavi. The lighting inside was pretty damn bright, almost flourescently so. We headed into a banquet room where the tables were covered in white and the chairs in white and gold, as if in anticipation of a wedding.

Good food: Best roast pork I've had in Georgia so far (and Georgia could well be the world center of pork connoisseurship) + the ubiquitous and good tomato/cucumber salad + a chicken salad + a liver dish, also good. And bread. And a good red wine. And a delicious limonati (which isn't lemonade, but instead a sort of Georgian version of soda, which might or might not be lemon-flavored).

The band wasn't all that good, and we agreed they were too loud, but hell, they were live, and they played the Georgian classics, and people danced. And sang.

Gia works 12-hour shifts at a local factory and has a wife and young daughter, who are currently visiting her village ("so - pelli").  Gia used to be a sports writer, covering U.S. basketball and marathons and other sports. But the pay was so poor, he earns more at the factory. Gia is a soft-spoken man - Nino and I really enjoyed his company. Next time we get together, Gia's mother will join us.

Singing along after sufficient amount of beer ingested

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