I was working late last night when I decided to take a walk on Ariapita Avenue to get something to eat. Ariapita Avenue, or “The Avenue” as people have come to call it, is as close to an “entertainment strip” as it gets in Trinidad at the moment..it’s Miami’s Lincoln Road..and Beirut’s Gemmayzeh. The Street is lined with business, boutiques, carnival band houses, restaurants, fast food places, bars, and lounges..making it a little too easy to have an after work drink! I’ve really lucked out – location wise – with my last two jobs. In Beirut, I worked in the heart of Downtown..and here in Trinidad, I’m right off of The Avenue.
Anyway, I walked out of my office, turned the corner, and saw no less that THREE gyro stands setting up right next to each other to cater to people going home after a night of drinking, as well as those who want just something quick to pick up on their way home from work..
..and this is only on one corner!
According to some of my co-workers, gyro stands started to pop up all over the place about a year and a half to two years ago..when “The Avenue” started to become really popular. “It’s a really fast and easy food option, and everyone seems to like it.” they said. Even so, it really struck me as a bit strange to see plenty more gyro places on the street than local food options like Doubles. I don’t even remember seeing that many gyro (or “shawarma”) places in Lebanon! Actually, up until the time I left Beirut, hot dogs were actually one of the more popular “night time, after the club” food options of choice. How bizarre..right?
The gyros in Trinidad are nothing quite like the “shawarmas” I remember in Beirut..Malek Al Batata always being my favorite.. The ones here are missing the fries, the pickles, the tabbouleh, and the tahini sauce. But I guess Al Jawhii on the Avenue will have to do the trick while burning that midnight oil..
I wonder when I will stop comparing everything to Beirut! (Maybe never? That city definitely put a spell on me.)