there’s a popular curry mee stall in ipoh garden near my house. the stall, and the coffee shop it calls home, appear to be family-run, much like every other chinese-owned establishment in malaysia. i’m a huge fan of their noodles and often take my colleagues there. save for the occasional slow service characteristic of every “femes” food stall, i had no complaints at all.
that is until last month.
my friends and i went for brunch there one day. there were 4 of us, but my friend’s sister didn’t feel like curry mee and ordered food from another stall instead. however, one of my friends felt a little peckish and suggested that we also order a couple of meat balls to accompany our meal.
i went over to the stall and made my order – 3 servings of dry curry mee, one with extra see ham, and 8 meatballs. the lady who took my order looked over to the table and saw there were 4 of us.
“why don’t i put 2 meatballs each in your noodles?” she asked. i was a little puzzled because i only asked for 3 plates, and repeated my order. “yes yes, i know,” she replied, “just that it’d be easier if i put the meatballs on your plates first.” oh oooooooookays. i shrugged, said thank you, and went back to my seat.
40 minutes elapsed and there was no sign of our noodles. i gave the lady a gentle reminder and a growl from her later, our food arrived – 4 plates of dry curry mee, one with extra cockles AND *shudder* pig skin, with 2 meatballs in each plate.
i wasn’t happy. i only ordered 3 plates, i explained to the poor clueless foreign employee who had the misfortune of working for those women. the lady shouted from the stall, “no you didn’t; you ordered 4!” but i didn’t get really angry until she turned to her mother and her sister and said, “she ordered 4, right? you heard her right?”
as the women nodded their heads and shot daggers at me with their eyes, i became increasingly furious. i refused the 4th plate and only paid for 3. then my friends and i ate, ignoring the murmurs of the curry mee women. the gravy tasted like chalk that day.
i’m not sure what it is about people who let fame and wealth get to their heads. that curry mee is absolutely delicious. people flock there every single day. at RM5 per basic serving of curry mee, with the meager amount of garnishing in each plate, and the rent those folks collect from the other occupants of the coffee shop, they are definitely far above the poverty line.
they could have chosen to be polite, pleasant people but instead they have joined the ranks of their (in)famous counterparts in penang and kl. it’s such a shame this happened in front of friends who were eating there for the first time. they were seriously the most unpleasant people i have met in ipoh.
anyway, i stopped by again this morning, bringing yet another first timer there (they need to start paying ME for bringing more people to their stall). it was hard to go back there, but i am not one to keep a grudge so i thought…why not? maybe they wouldn’t remember me.
boy, was i wrong.
this time, i told my friend to order for me – a plate of dry curry mee (mee only) with extra cockles (cockles only, no pig skin). those bitches messed with me, asking my friend to confirm if i wanted any other additional garnishings. i was again confused…what the hell were “additional garnishings”? didn’t their noodles usually come with the regular strips of chicken breast, 2 thin slices of char siew and a couple of pieces of roast pork? those aren’t “additional”. aren’t they part of the package?
but i knew what they were doing the moment my food arrived and the same poor, clueless foreign employee with the misfortune of oh-you-know-the-drill put a plate of curry mee with ONLY SEE HAM in front of me.
the nerve. the. effing. nerve.
it was then that i resolved never to go there again. i know they won’t miss me, but i will not allow myself to be played like that. what a bunch of stuck up bitches! and to think i was ready to forgive them! to think i thought their noodles were good enough to put my pride aside and let their past sins go!
i won’t ask you to boycott them. it’s silly to, anyway. their noodles are great and i would still recommend the place to anyone who asks me where they can eat something other than dimsum/chee cheong fun/nga choy kai/kai see hor fun in ipoh.
but i’m not going there anymore. if they are so petty to remember one customer who stood her ground and refused to be bullied into accepting an order they messed up…only God can save their souls.