Have you found yourself being in a foreign country and wanting to grab some local food to eat? Then you realize those traditional restaurants’ prices are in the sky and you buy McFries instead.
When I think about globalization I immediately think about food. I can’t help it, especially because shopping mainly means to purchase the necessary fuel for my body (and that is not always chocolate). But what happens when I do the next best thing after eating and I travel to see the world? This, obviously means not just seeing it, but also tasting it.
Each country has its culinary specialties, most European ones have tasty and good looking food. Probably I would have less appetite in Asia, where those almost still alive animals are supposed to end up in our stomach. But Europe has to offer so many and different dishes, cakes, sweets, beverages that makes our saliva production pretty increased. The problem comes with the prices. Especially if you walk on the main street of a city, most of the restaurants are probably only affordable for retired German grandmothers or fresh millionaires. This of course doesn’t mean you can’t dig yourself more into finding cheap and more isolated places, where you can eat for a decent price. The point is that this is not only about exploiting tourists, but also about helping mainstream and huge companies expand their homogeneous and boring fast-foods. This contribution to their stabile operation in each country is not only the fault of locals’ greediness for money and there could be tens or thousands other reasons to name.
But why can’t cities come up with different initatives to sell local meals for proper prices? Does quality always has to mean expensive?
The head of these restaurants could say that if you are not willing to pay the price, then go home or elsewhere or be satisfied with the offers of McDonald’s, Subway, Kfc and god knows what else is on the market. Unfortunately most of these fast-food places, because I wouldn’t call them restaurants, are open non-stop, have nicely photoshopped images of food and are more or less cheap. Not to mention that are situated in potentially crowded places. 3 weeks ago in the early hours I couldn’t find anything open close to the train station in Budapest, so I was forced to buy something from McDonald’s. Never again. Seriously, at least they could strive for the food to be tasty.
I am angry. Because I want to eat local meals without leaving the half of the cost of my plane ticket there. Because I love my stomach and I want to treat it well. I do not accept the opinion of the one’s who are glad they can find the same food like at home in a 2000kms distance too. I bet there is something special and national and traditioal that can fit for picky people’s tastes too.
Otherwise stay home if you are not open-minded (or rather open-tummied…not literally).