Friday, 5 April 2013
tell 'em a hookah smoking caterpillar has given you the call
Off to the land of the sheesha today. Or the West London variant in any case.
I've worked in various countries around the middle east, where the caterpillar's favourite smoking device seems to be referred to as a sheesha rather than a hookah. Adding it as a suffix to an order for coffee seems to bring the full paraphernalia.
In London it's fairly commonplace to see them around Edgware Road, mainly in those cafes that can have a sort of sheltered outdoor section, which is a kind of weather adaptation.
The system reminds me of a sort of reverse barbecue, with the coal on the outside and the smoke going downwards into the water. I was once told that a single session with one of those pipes was the equivalent of inhaling the smoke from 100 cigarettes.
We were inside the restaurant to enjoy Fattoush and maybe some Sambousek Jebneh and even a Kafta Khosh-khash whilst chatting in the early evening.
I did think briefly about that pine nut and rose water rice pudding too, but it will need to wait for another day.