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An Unexpected Feast  by Cairistiona 18 Review(s)
Eirinn LeighReviewed Chapter: 1 on 4/21/2016
Wonderful. Quite humorous!

Author Reply: My apologies for the late reply... somehow the notification ended up in my spam folder. :/ But thank you! So glad you enjoyed this and that it gave you a chuckle!

PSWReviewed Chapter: 1 on 11/23/2015
:-) I needed something short and light-hearted before bedtime, and I thought....what better than Thorongil eating eyeballs with chopsticks?? It was just as fantastic this time around... ;-) Thanks (again) for this delightful read...

Author Reply: Ah, I know what you mean! I keep a list of lighthearted fics on my phone, for when insomnia or just a bad strikes. I'm honored my little fic is one you use for that!

WinterwitchReviewed Chapter: 1 on 10/21/2013
What a wonderful, wonderful tale! I just had the time of my life. You describe this so beautifully and in such a fun, entertaining way, showing the fun part of Aragorn's cultural shock as well as the appreciation he has for the foreign customs and the details of that culture seen through his eyes and shown by his hosts.

I thought that bright green sauce at the beginning was Wasabi, but is this served in the Chinese kitchen? My knowledge of Chinese - and Asian - kitchen and cooking in general is limited to what I know from European restaurants and the numerous cookbooks I have and love. I had a similar experience once, though, at least as far as the hotness goes; in my favourite Mongolian restaurant they did a mistake with the Wasabi for the excellent Sushi they serve and served it kind of double-strength. I love Wasabi and tolerate this kind of hotness usually well, so I coated my Sushi liberally - far too liberally. The WW said he didn't know a human's face could become so red! *g*
How lucky you are to have made these travels and experiences, though I could easily forego the eye delicacies.

Author Reply: Thank you, Alcina! I had a feeling you'd enjoy this one. *g* And I did have wasabi in mind. The things he eats here are a blend of several different Asian countries' cuisines, because I wanted a generalized sense of the Far East without pinning it to any specific culture. I imagine that poor Aragorn's face was about as red as yours! Wasabi can be... intense. LOL I'm more of a hot mustard/hot pepper sauce person, myself, and yes, I'll probably skip the eyeballs too!

Thanks for reading!

Kaylee ArafinwielReviewed Chapter: 1 on 1/15/2011
Cairistiona,

I've read this a few times, yet I've never reviewed it...I'm sorry! It gets better with every re-read though...poor Aragorn! I just want to hug him.

A few months ago, I was finishing up an accelerated Medical Administrative Assisting course, and my one-month externship was served in my neurologist's office...I asked him if he'd take me on, and I was very thankful he'd rather take me than entrust me to some strange doctor's care. :) It was a good time; I quickly got into the feel of being "on the other side". One thing I did not get used to was the places we went for lunch.

Dr. Ahmed and his other assistants were from the general Middle Eastern/South Asian region, and enjoyed Indian food. I...did not. Nor did I grow to like it, lol. I appreciated the bread. And the occasional not spicy rice. And the sweets were ok. But the rest...the curry and the curried rice and the whatever else nearly took my head off, so oh, can I sympathize. I do not recall any eyes, though, thank God. I hope never to find any. (And, occasionally, they'd take pity on me and order Subway, or a couple of times it was fish & chips, knowing my weakness for British food. :) I really do love them...just not the Indian food. So I also had the equivalent of that Westron-speaking server guy around from time to time.)

Can I join in the requests for a sequel? Maybe this could expand into a "Thorongil Travels Arda On His Stomach" series? LOL!

Kaylee

Author Reply: Thank you, Kaylee! What a wonderful idea for a story series! LOL I'll have to give that some thought. If I do end up writing some more, I'll dedicate them to you. :)

What I love about this story is how so many readers have shared with me similar experiences--there's seems to be a lot of wincing reactions of "been there, done that" to Thorongil's predicament. I'm not a fan of super hot spicy food and I very much sympathize with your lunches. There's nothing quite like those Asian peppers for making your skull blow off and leaving you light-headed. LOL I guess some people like that experience but I never have and never will. *reaches for glass of milk to wash away the memory* Yes, pass the fish & chips, please!

Thanks for the review and for sharing your own experience. :)

Linda HoylandReviewed Chapter: 1 on 6/24/2009
I'd not read this before as I usually read while eating!Thanks for the warnings. I loved Aragorn's nobility and the kindness of the host when they realised he was squeamish about their food. Aragorn is braver than I am!

Author Reply: Thanks, Linda, I'm glad you enjoyed this... and glad you heeded the warning even if it meant a delay for you in reading it. LOL I think Aragorn, even in less than ideal circumstances, would always try his best to make sure he didn't insult anyone. And yes, the kindness is a reflection of my own hosts when I was in China. Good people there. :) Thanks for the review!

websteransReviewed Chapter: 1 on 5/12/2009
Hilarious!

As an American city gal with a Chinese husband, this one really rang true for me.

Have you ever tried eating shrimp rolls, or whole shellfish, or maybe just big pieces of broccoli, neatly with chopsticks, while your mother-in-law is watching?

Author Reply: Oh my, that *would* be pressure! I have to say I've never had that worry, no. I managed fairly well with the chopsticks in China, although some dishes utterly defeated me and I had to sheepishly ask for silverware. LOL I'm glad you enjoyed this story and that it touched on your own experience. Thanks for the review!

Laikwal‚ssÍReviewed Chapter: 1 on 4/19/2009
thank you so much for this delightful piece of a humourous story, albeit I could very much sympathize with poor Aragorn. Only thinking of eating an eyeball or a chick makes me ill. Nonetheless you made my day and made me laugh. Thank you. Lai

Author Reply: Thank you, Lai! I'm glad you got a laugh out of this, despite (or maybe because of?) the disgusting food. I'm with you... don't think I could ever really eat any of those things! Thanks again for the review. :)

Lily BagginsReviewed Chapter: 1 on 4/18/2009
Oh my---this had my eyes goggling out of my head, wondering what dish was coming next, and my ribs aching with laughter. Poor Aragorn! And we all know this couldn't have been the last time he was faced with such . . . exotic . . . cuisine.

My dad ate a fertilized duck egg back in the 1940s, in the Navy, while stationed in China, and he said it was the most hideous thing imaginable. So this really hit home! And years ago, my best friend went to the Philippines and said they're called "baloots" there---very popular. Eeegh, I can eat many odd things, but one of those isn't it!

Kudos to you for this engaging story---it was a treat!

Author Reply: Thank you, Lily! I'm glad you liked this and could relate to it--seems like nearly everyone has had a story about their own encounters with bizarre foods, but you're the first who knows someone who had maodan or yes, balut! So it was indeed hideous for your dad... I did find myself wondering what it might taste like. But not wondering enough to actually try it!

And I do think you're right... there's probably a lot of other bizarre foods Thorongil had to eat. Hmm, maybe I could make a series of this... *grin*

Thanks for the review!

LarnerReviewed Chapter: 1 on 4/16/2009
I suspect I would not do well on a trip to China or Japan, as I can't eat most seafoods or shrimp, my stomach does not tolerate peppers or onions or even cucumbers well (acid reflux does horrible things when faced with strong spices or acids), and rice makes me want to gag, as the texture of it is something I've never tolerated well. Add in a general dislike of both tea and coffee, and I simply would be reduced to a diet of vegetables, chicken, and water, which hopefully would not give me problems!

Poor Aragorn--at least he found one person who appreciated how he felt! That dish of poultry and simple rice must have been so reassuring after realizing he'd been eating eyes! Gaack!

I did giggle, however!

Author Reply: And you can't drink the water in China! LOL Well, you can, if you boil it or drink bottled water. But yes, it would be hard for you over there if you were in an area that didn't have many Western restaurants (or ones that serve a Western menu, which fortunately many do). Anyway, back to Thorongil. *grin* I'm glad you liked this and got a giggle out of it, and yes, thank goodness for the kind-hearted, astute and understanding chef! Thanks for the review!

Peredhil loverReviewed Chapter: 1 on 4/16/2009
Thank you, this was delightfully humourous! I found myself laughing out loud at poor Thorongilís trials more than once (and, feeling slightly sickened along with the poor guy as well, particularly at the fertilized egg).

I must tell you, though, while this did give me a smile, it also caused me a bit of apprehension over my upcoming trip to Japan this summer. (My husband is an invited speaker, and thereíll be several formal banquets put on to impress and honour their foreign guests, and I do admit to wondering if their idea of impressive food might differ just a bit from mine.) Whole, intact invertebrates, eyeballs, and things that are particularly rubbery donít usually do it for me! Oh, well, at least I can use chopsticks, so hopefully no food will go flying like it did for poor Thorongil!

Thanks again for the laugh,

peredhil lover


Author Reply: You're certainly welcome, Peredhil Lover! I'm glad you enjoyed the story despite it's quease-inducing elements. I wouldn't worry about your trip to Japan--I would imagine most of the food will be highly edible and delicious, and probably not a fertilized egg in sight. ;) And yes, you're a step ahead of poor Thorongil if you can already use chopsticks. Thanks for the review!

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