Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Savory to the Taste (07/26/12)
TITLE: Oh Taste and see
By Tendi Rice
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It was not long before the first serving of our twelve course meal was delivered. It looked dear and was sparingly yet very attractively set-out on each plate. I observed my colleagues closely to make sure I was going about it all right, I could not embarrass myself, after all this was the first time I had been invited for the executive’s dinner and I could not afford to seem ignorant. I made little conversation with those near me, mostly responding to questions asked, trying by all means to be friendly and keeping a smile on my face.
I had very little money on me and hence I did not have the means to consume much. I was too ashamed to ask for the price-list, least everyone learnt that I had limited funds. However I was certain all this was extremely overpriced, judging from the impeccable appearance of the food, the exquisitely dressed staff serving us, the breathtaking facade of this hotel and obviously, my rich colleagues who were evidently not bothered by the costs. I watched them laugh and enjoy every bit of this dinner, somewhat envying their positions as they were not nearly as anxious and uncomfortable as I was.
After the fourth course I asked the waiter not to bring me anymore food as I had had enough. He politely asked if I would like to jump to dessert but I declined claiming I was too full. I was too embarrassed to admit I had eaten enough for the little I had in my pocket. He went on to offer me a drink, but once again I turned down the offer, happy to have a go at the pitcher of water already set before me.
The colleagues around me realized I had stopped eating and all inquired if I was okay. Each time I politely smiled, and confidently assured them I had had enough, besides, I was trying to eat light anyway. I watched them have a go at each successive course, all the while wishing I could enjoy the pleasures they were indulging themselves in.
After dinner, I had one of the hotel porters’ escort me to my room, a service the receptionist insisted on and I accepted though uncertain I still had the resources to pay for this. He was about as young as I was and very friendly, so he chatted me up as we made our way. He was new to the job too and somewhat nervous, which I easily identified with.
As we approached my door, I ruffled through my purse, trying to find some change to give him. “I don’t have much”, I explained, “I will barely be able to pay for that extravagant dinner we just had”. Before I could continue he interrupted me, “Ma’am, we do not accept tips at the Boulevard and as for the dinner you just had, that’s all paid for by the company.”
I shuddered at what I had missed out on, yet so longingly desired.
As I had my devotion before going to bed that night, my attention was drawn to Psalms 34:8
Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.
I thought about how I spent the evening envying those that enjoyed the pleasures of the tasty food, but denied myself of a privilege that I was already entitled to. I meditated on this verse, thinking of the many times we deprive ourselves of the appetizing, mouth-watering and enticing blessings the Lord bestows on many of our colleagues, yet we never take the time to taste and relish ourselves in these desirable endowments that we are already so entitled to, all paid for in full.
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