Mangalore or Mangaluru is the chief port city of the Indian State of Karnataka. While the city is known for its beaches, scenic beauty, temples, ports and India’s famous celebrities one cannot ignore what seafood means to a typical Mangalorean!
During my many short trips to the coastal city, it would be my prime objective to savour various delicious fish dishes or for that matter make seafood my main diet during my entire stay. Well, that’s what Mangalore does to you. You think about fish fry after a good day at the beach, after a temple visit, a visit to Pabbas Ice cream if your a tourist that is.
My colleague just happens to be from Mangalore and for all possible reasons will refer to him as Mr.Pai. What really amazed me is his love for fish and his favourite quote, “We Mangaloreans can vouch for fish!” At first it did amaze me because a lot of us love seafood until I questioned him further and got to hear the things he does for fish from time to time did I fathom his love for fish.
The manner in which his face lights up when anyone of us would mention “fish”, I catch him time and again browsing online for seafood and his endless wait for the day to get over to finally eat fish. The best part is when there was a promotional offer on the new e-commerce website freshtohome.com for free fish on first buy and when I learnt he’d ordered from different id’s. Sometimes, I even go the extra mile, tease him to name different varieties of fish and once I’ve heard him name them and I’ve had a good look at the enthusiasm growing on his face, I finally pop the question “Which one is your favourite Mr.Pai?” and then with his ravenously hungry look replies “It’s King fish! Seer!! Seer Fish!!” I know for a fact he’d go out that day, buy seer fish and satisfy his appetite.
I sometimes wonder how he would express his love for his woman. Probably “I’m so glad you swam to me”, “I like you as much as seer fish”, “There are millions of fish in the sea, while I’ll try to eat as much as I can… I’d keep you safe with me because your my favourite”. That should probably serve as a final testament to his Lady love.
While we all know that there are plenty of fishes in the sea for everyone, to Mr.Pai .. Fish everyday is the spice of life!
How many Mr.Pai’s have you met?