We come across the best memories doing things we never planned on doing. Ridhika Sultania shares one such incident which has gone on to be one of her fondest travel memories of life. A story filled with travel fails, friendly faces and… Maggi.
2 years ago I visited a ski resort in the Dolomiti range in Italy. One afternoon, I returned a little late from the slopes, and the kitchen had closed which meant that after a tiring day out on the snowy slopes I wouldn’t be able to get my hands on any food. This particular ski resort was in a bucolic, quaint locality, and a decent restaurant which could serve vegetarian food was miles away. Plus it was bitter cold. There was no way I was leaving the warmth of the hotel this late.
I searched my bags for something edible and the only thing left was a packet of Maggi noodles. Unfortunately the room didn’t have an electric kettle. I sneaked into the hotel kitchen hiding the packet of Maggi in my coat, hoping to convince some gentleman to give me some hot water. The kitchen was full of chefs in all shapes and sizes. I tried my best communicate to one of them that I wanted hot water (they didn’t understand English and I couldn’t speak their language) I honestly don’t know what he deciphered from my frantic gestures, but he held out a huge cauldron for me.
I didn’t hesitate – I ripped out my packet of Maggi and emptied the contents. The chef, an older guy who must have been my father’s age, kept mumbling something while I kept directing him to boil the noodles. I guess he was probably asking me what the yellow packet of noodles was all about 😂He even offered several ingredients, hoping to help (there was salt and oil and even some boiled pasta) But all that I needed was my noodles and the packet of masala 😂
For a change, the Maggi was ready in 2 minutes (considering the pot, kept on a powerful kitchen stove, was too huge for 100gm of noodles) As if reading my mind, he served me the Maggi on a plate. I held out my fork for him as I wanted him to taste, and I am glad he didn’t refuse. And then…he did the same to me! I was extremely touched by this gesture. While leaving I gently kissed his cheeks and thanked the entire team and said ‘Caio’ a million times (That’s all the Italian I can speak) I then sneaked back into my room lest some manager caught me and threw me out of the hotel.
Till date, whenever I tear open a pack of Maggi noodles, I think of this gentleman chef and his team, and fondly send him my good wishes even though it’s been 2 long years of this incident. Unknowingly, Maggi made me a special connection, and it warms my heart to think about it ❤️