After graduation Ivan took a thought — where to go then? From early childhood he had been dreaming to see the world, get acquainted with other cultures. At that moment his Polish friend recommended him to pay attention to the Higher School of hotel industry in Poland. Ivan together with his friends came to Poland to the city of Poznan “for reconnaissance”.
The first impressions encouraged him. Poznan having more than one million inhabitants turned to be the city of students: so many colleges and universities it has! The city seemed to be full of smiling, well-intentioned, and willingly answering to all questions young people. Ivan heard from the guys who had been studying at the Higher School of hotel industry only good references. And the respectable building impressed him very much. That’s why on his return to Minsk the fellow found his position: “I will
go to Poznan!”
The family considered his choice with a decent respect. It was very important for Ivan, because college studies cost a pretty penny. First payment for the studies was made by the mother. For the second one money were found in one of Minsk banks — Ivan was given a credit. And to pay for the third — the last school year summer training in Greece will help him. This year Ivan submitted a petition for training in this country, perishing a hope to earn money for to finish his studies and to get acquainted with
the Greek cuisine…
…College studies usually start on the 1st of October. Ivan needed two months to start to understand and speak Polish as well. Seminars, lections were passing, but there were no practical training on kitchenry. And he wanted it so much and as quick as possible! Later on he got to know that at School there were two variants of education — lections and seminars and practical course. It means that one is directed to the kitchen where he is learning sapience of culinary art, but he or she should study for the session by his own forces.
Ivan had chosen the way of practice. He was lucky to get an experienced teacher who if to believe Ivan’s words was a neat craftsman in this occupation.
The kitchen is situated at the school and there food for the students’ cafй is being prepared. The most difficult and, probably, “terrible” thing for Ivan was not to learn cooking but to dish out ready food for students. This work requires fantastic speed.
The first half year of the studies ran across very fast. During the session Ivan passed 30 exams and credits. So, I may say that cook’s studies no less serious than the journalists’ ones.
His first practical training Ivan passed in Minsk, at the Ministers Council canteen. It seemed to be no very romantic: he used to deal with the dishes well-known from childhood. And he longed for exoticism. He got the exoticism at his next practical training in London where Ivan got familiar with many “delicious” recipes and the English secret of tea brewing as well.
Ivan told me a case when he had to dress out the fish, I should mention that during his studies he didn’t like to dress it out and even eat it. It occurred that there was a national holiday in Poland dedicated to all national cuisines of the world. It is a great celebration for the school where young people from all over the world study.
So, for one of the dishes it was necessary 140 (!) alive royal carps. Their dressing out was entrusted to… Ivan. The whole day he was dealing with these fish dressing out. It was so interesting to see how my interlocutor told about that fact: so many emotions were reflected on his face that I even felt fish odor.
To the question: what Ivan would like to do after finishing his studies — to work abroad or apply his attempts in Minsk he has a definite answer. In future he wishes to open his own restaurant in native city of Minsk; this restaurant will be famous for its national Belarusian cuisine, this cuisine will be very exotic for foreigners.
When Ivan comes home his parents ask him to cook “something special”.
— And what? — I ask him.
— When you work at the kitchen for all days long, you don’t want to cook at home. Probably, you may cook some fried eggs… But to tell the truth, being at home this time I prepared Greek salad. My relatives liked it very much.