After we left poppas place today we had to find a bank of America branch to make a deposit to cover the bills, this brought us to parts of flushing even Ella hadn’t ever seen and she moved here from Russia when she was 1 and except for about 4 years in total has spent her entire 38 years living here. We decided to treat ourselves to Chinese ,Vietnamese or Japanese to celebrate buying the Australia tickets yesterday for our holiday home.
We went to an old favorite and found it had gone out of business, so we rolled down prince st only a few hundred yards from the queens river and discovered a street where 5 businesses in a row were restaurants. Feeling a bit like Goldilocks and the three bears with so many choices, we decided to try a very large Chinese restaurant on the corner of 38th and prince we were put off by all the chefs smoking out front but the reviews on the front window read very well.
We asked one of the chefs to open the disabled ramped entrance, he stared at Zeus and made comments about the dog, mumbled and went inside. Soon the door opened to red velvet, golden chintz, ornate chandeliers, and red and gold carpet and my first thought was the TV show dynasty called they want their set back. We entered the main room to screams NO DOG NO DOG YOU LEAVE, I explained to the obviously blind person who couldn’t see the glow in the dark red vest with not one but three 4 by 1 patches saying SERVICE DOG that he was indeed a service dog
So they showed us to a table, Ella pointed to their obscured health rating on the wall it was a B. Suddenly we heard Zeus whimper like he did at dinner time, we looked down and someones meal from days gone by was stuck to the carpet and moldy and crumbs were every where and the paper the chopsticks came in well at least 2 dozen of those were on the floor. The waiter slopped chilli sauce in a bowl in front of us and it splashed onto the table cloth, which I quickly realized wasn’t patterned but stained and the waitress bought a pot of tea and there was a perfect hand print in chilli sauced stained on the top of the pot. We rolled out to the crunching of old food under my tires. We told the owner he just said “so you no stay?”
We, relieved to breath fresh air turned down the hill of prince st and saw 5 restaurants, one Thai, one Vietnamese, and three Chinese. We decided on the Thai, we read the menu there was vegan options. I had eaten these same dishes on three continents including Asia and they were always animal product free.
So we rolled into the Thai restaurant, to the sudden screams of NO DOG NO DOG DOG GET OUT. We explained again he was a service dog, and they reluctantly seated us.
I asked for the rice flat noodles with vegetables with green curry paste and coconut milk, after telling her I am deadly allergic to animal product, she went to get our food then I smelled something and asked again the same woman who assured me”No animal no fish” then told me all have fish sauce ,everything have fish sauce. When I explained that’s fish she replied “ no not fish, fish sauce” so one trip to the ER avoided we tried door number three the Vietnamese.
PHO is my favorite thing on earth, as we entered a little person ( as in what would have formerly been called a dwarf ) screamed, you guessed it, no wait for it? NO DOG DOG NOT ALLOWeD DIRTY BAD FOR BUSINESS” again I explained it was a service dog. The people two tables away told the little person to get rid of the disgusting dog she explained it was against the law to do so so they asked us to move to a table next to the kitchen door in front of the toilets and garbage can where they fold napkins so my “SMELLY DOG wouldn’t upset customers. I explained to her that was discrimination and how would she feel if I was the owner and said no little people? She shrugged her shoulders. I asked about fish sauce because I am allergic, so she smiled and said “everything in restaurant has fish sauce everything bad for you sorry” I have cooked Vietnamese I speak and read the language and I have eaten it all over the world so obviously this was a lie, but it was their legal way of getting rid of Zeus so we left.
Door number four, a Cantonese restaurant we entered and you guessed it, can we get a sing along? NO DOG NO DOG. I explained to her I showed her the laminated card with the ADA section pertinent to the law stating it was illegal to refuse entry to a federal service dog
She started leaning over me screaming and poking at me, I told her to leave us so she sat at the next table screaming about how we should eat upstairs better “NOONE SEE DOG UPSTAIRS” I pointed to my wheels and said “no stairs” she started screaming again and screaming louder and leaning over, and she tried to grab me. I was proud of my restraint after all we had endured, I told to calm down it was no way to run a restaurant and we left. So we rolled about five blocks to a restaurant we had always want to try called PHO-shabu shabu, a Korean and Vietnamese mix. We entered to a less loud but still annoying chorus of”NO DOG NO DOG” I explained and we were seated, so this was our second Vietnamese and fifth attempt at a meal in now what was changing from lunch to dinner hour 4 hours since we left home almost two since started the restaurant crawl.
So we got menus and we decided on vegetarian PHO and rice noodles, and vegetable shabu- shabu to be cooked at the table and two coronas out of their 8 beer selection. I once again quizzed the waitstaff and was assured “no animal,no meat only water and vegetables” so she comes back. First no corona, they were out of corona so we choose miller, they were out out of miller so we choose Heineken, they were out of Heineken out of 8 beers there was only Korean BO. Then the other waiter comes by, evidently they have a Manhattan restaurant as well and they use their menus and the vegetarian shabu- shabu is only for Manhattan.
So, so far we have no beer and we ordered shabu- shabu and they were out of that. we ordered PHo but were assured no animal product will be served, so she brings the pho but there is tell tale specs of beef bullion cube in the broth, so I ask and she replies “NO BEEF, BROTH LIKE MEDICINE GOOD FOR YOU” then she brings Kimchee to put in it.
I ask what the red sauce is? she replies “chillies and fish sauce”? I explain fish sauce is fish to which she replies “ NO FISH IS NOT ANIMAL OR MEAT FISH IS FISH” So by now there is an aroma or beef stock wafting up so I ask for the manager, and sure enough she tells me ‘ IT NOT MEAT IT BEEEF BROTH “
I explain how allergic I am and the fish sauce and beef could have sent me to hospital and she replies by laughing and still didn’t get that broth is made from beef!
So we roll out of there. We get to a place where we order take away from all the time, heads up folks never eat in where you order take away from because that favorite dish they do you will die for every time you order once you see the conditions you realize YOU REALLY MIGHT DIE FROM!
Our favorite purveyor of broccoli in garlic sauce with crispy tofu, has a galvanized iron lean-to as a kitchen with holes in the roof and the waitress wiped the inside of the water jug with the same two fingers that just adjusted her bra strap and scratched her ass.
So today we learned that even though it’s the 21st century, and we the dis and other wise abled have had the right to use and travel and enter eateries with service dogs for almost quarter of a century, when you enter china town the clock goes back to dark dark ages where food is prepared just like great grand ma did when she fed the workers building the great wall, and they choose to scream at and discriminate against anyone they bloody well like but do it them and they get seven on their side!