Kamskjellsuppen som reddet kvelden

 

 
 

Det er en varm og solfylt ettermiddag i juli, og gjestene på hotellet er begynt å trekke inn fra bassengområdet for å skifte til kveldsantrekk. Vi er på Loews Miami Beach Hotel i Florida, et luksuriøst Art Deco-landemerke midt i hjertet av South Beach. Det gedigne bassenget har direkte tilgang til den vakre stranden, og det beste av shopping, restauranter og uteliv er i umiddelbar nærhet.
 
Fornemmelsen av velstand er overveldende. Det blinker og skinner fra Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Rolex og alle de andre luksusmerkene. Folk her er kravstore. Hvorfor ta til takke med det nest beste, når man har råd til det beste?
 
Klokken nærmer seg halv åtte, og baren i foajeen begynner å fylles opp. Muntre, vakre og veldannede mennesker er klare til å gå ut å spise, men først skal det skåles i Champagne.
 
Samtidig pågår en av naturens prosesser utfor hotellet. Det varme formiddagsluften har steget høyt til værs og blitt avkjølt, og nå henger store, mørke skyer tungt over South Beach. En sterk blitz går av, og i samme øyeblikk høres et drønn. Det blir stille i foajeen. Så kommer regnet.
 
Det plasker ned på skikkelig tropisk vis, og når du tror det ikke er mulig å regne kraftigere, er det nettopp det som skjer. Det merkes en oppgitt stemning blant de pene menneskene. Hvordan komme seg inn og ut av taxien uten å bli våt i det velstelte håret? For ikke å snakke om de dyre, høyhælte skoene, de tåler jo ikke vann? Plan etter plan i foajeen kanselleres. Ingen vil ut i det vannvittige været, og snart er det lang kø for å få bord på hotellets beste restaurant. Vi slår følge. Restauranten er full på et øyeblikk, og vi er heldige som får det siste bordet, et lite inneklemt 4-mannsbord rett ved døren til kjøkkenet.
 
Denne fornemme restauranten har nok ord på seg for å ha nydelig mat og utmerket service, men verken betjeningen eller kjøkkenet er klar for slikt uventet storinnrykk. Alle gjestene på restauranten vil bestille samtidig, og det hele går fullstendig i surr for servitørene. Når maten endelig kommer, er det til feil bord, og når maten serveres til riktig bord, er det feil retter. En restaurantsjefs mareritt er i ferd med å bli virkelighet.
 
De pene, vakre menneskene begynner å bli irriterte. De rister oppgitt på hodet. – Det er en skandale, hører vi mannen på nabobordet si høylytt. Han slår ut med hendene. På et annet bord foregår en intens diskusjon. Det er et par i slutten av 50-årene. Smilet hennes er fullstendig borte, og ørepynten rister så vi hører det helt bort til bordet vårt. Til høyre for oss har en dame fått en forrett hun ikke har bestilt. Hun spiser den likevel. Hun orker ikke å vente på at servitøren skal komme tilbake. – Det er det verste jeg har spist, noen gang, utbryter hun og venter på servitøren likevel.
 
Over hele restauranten høres murring fra misfornøyde gjester. Betjeningen fortviler. – Pokkers vær!
 
Min kjære bestiller kamskjellsuppe til forrett. Den blir servert uten kamskjell. Anders begynner å smile.
 
– Hørt om den svenske kokken som hadde prøvesmakt kamskjellsuppen?
 
Vi ser for oss kokken på kjøkkenet som gumler i seg kamskjellene til min kjære og bryter ut i latter.
 
– Nei, nei, historien er ikke ferdig, fortsetter Anders.
 
– Dagen etter møtte han ikke på jobb, og derfor ringte kjøkkensjefen for å høre hva som var galt. Kokken fortalte at han hadde prøvesmakt kamskjellsuppen, og nå hadde han vondt i magen. – Var skjellene dårlige? spurte kjøkkensjefen. – Nej det tror jag inte, svarte svensken. Kjøkkensjefen fortalte da at han pleide å se og lukte om kamskjellene ikke var som de burde når han åpnet dem. Da kom det et hjertesukk fra den svenske kokken: – Öppna dom…?
 
Vi fortsetter å le, selv om det morsomste er å forestille seg kokken på kjøkkenet.
 
– Det gjør ikke noe. Jeg er uansett allergisk mot kamskjell, smiler min kjære ironisk.
 
– Synes ikke vi skal beskylde kokken for å ha spist kamskjellene, følger jeg opp. Det kan jo være at servitøren var sulten, og at de forsvant på veien hit?
 
– Å jeg som trodde det var snus han hadde under leppen, utbryter Anders.
 
Vi knekker sammen av tanken på at servitøren har lukkemuskelen til et kamskjell under overleppen.
 
Stemningen rundt bordet vårt er vidunderlig. Den ene vittige kommentaren avløser den andre, og snart tøyser vi med forskjellige rare episoder vi har opplevd tidligere. Familien er samlet. Vi ler og koser oss. Vi er som en koselig liten øy ute i det store stormfulle restauranthavet. Helt uanfektet av det som skjer rundt oss.
 
Nå er det i stedet folk som ser på oss. – Hva er det med den familien der? – Har de aldri vært på en flott restaurant før? – Denne elendige serveringen er vel ingenting å le av? Noen fortsetter å stirre. Skepsisen begynner å slippe taket, og ansiktene mildnes opp. Noen begynner å smile, først av oss, men snart med oss. Det blir flere og flere smil og se, bortsett fra hun med ørepynten, hun kjefter ennå på mannen sin.
 
Noen ganger går det ikke helt som forventet. Da er det lett å erge seg og finne feil hos andre. Et godt valg i hverdagen er å bruke humor og ikke ta seg selv høytidelig.
Begeistring smitter, som en kollega av meg alltid sier.
 
Lykke til!

 
 

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