Blending surgery with gastronomy : The Tribune India

Join Whatsapp Channel

Blending surgery with gastronomy

Blending surgery  with gastronomy

Photo for representation. File photo

Atul Joshi

A junior doctor approached me and reverentially said, ‘Sir, I am keen on surgery for my post-graduation studies.’ I was pleased to know that I had been able to inspire a young doctor. I still wanted to hear it from him and asked, ‘Why?’ He whispered in my ear, ‘Sir ji, surgery mein padhna nahi padta hai!’ My ego was instantly deflated.

As a student, I was undecided on my specialty for post-graduation. Our rotatory internship postings helped us gain first-hand experience and make a choice. I was posted in medicine first and immediately exposed to intense brainstorming, which was often required to make a diagnosis. The wards and OPDs were overflowing with patients, and we invariably would look forward to tea time for some respite. However, there was not much to look forward to for eating — for about three months, we had a routine of tepid tea with bland sugar-free biscuits.

The scenario seemed to change the day I entered the surgery ward. I was welcomed by my boisterous seniors. I understood their enthusiasm once I was handed over a long list of ‘to-do orders’. I was inundated with tasks such as collecting blood samples, changing the dressing, arranging blood for patients, ensuring anaesthesia clearance, etc. After a full day’s hard work, when I was hoping to go home, I was tersely told that the emergency OT (operation theatre) was ready and full of patients. ‘Let us all rush’ was the command. The whole night was consumed by relentless surgeries. At dawn, as we finished the overnight interventions, I learnt to my chagrin that the routine OT of elective surgeries was now ready. I had now been without a substantial meal for over 24 hours. After another gruelling couple of hours, I was getting an eerie feeling of fainting. As the OT list was nearing its end, the same enthusiastic seniors were shouting for me, beckoning me to the tea room. Lo and behold, the room was filled with the inviting aroma of chhole bhature, paneer pakoras, kachoris and gulab jamun, and that too with the offer of ‘eat as much as you can’. I ate with gay abandon and slumped into one of the beds in a corner, only to be woken up the next morning with the same smiles and the same routine. I liked the intense hard work and the sumptuous food.

I joined as a house surgeon in the next batch. Apart from the onerous responsibilities of wards and operations, I was also assigned the task of arranging refreshments at tea time.

On one such occasion, I sheepishly confided to my boss that we had five samosas, one each for all team members, but were one gulab jamun short. Furrowing his brow, he thought for a second and told me to bolt the door. ‘Do gulab jamun mujhe do aur do tum khao,’ was the cryptic command. He coolly ate two while offering me the rest. His instructions were crisp: ‘Don’t disclose that there was anything other than samosas at tea time.’

I had found my calling — both in surgery and in my love of food.

Top News

Israeli President Herzog seeks India’s help in release of hostages held captive by Hamas

PM Modi meets Israeli President, bats for early and durable resolution to Palestine issue

Isaac Herzog seeks India’s help in release of hostages held ...

Lok Sabha ethics panel’s report on Mahua Moitra’s expulsion to be tabled in House on Monday

Lok Sabha ethics panel’s report on Mahua Moitra’s expulsion to be tabled in House on Monday

TMC MP can be expelled only if the House votes in favour of ...

Israel-Hamas conflict: Israel resumes Gaza assault after 7-day truce expires

Israel-Hamas conflict: Israel resumes Gaza assault after 7-day truce expires

PM Netanyahu says Hamas did not release all women hostages a...

Centre defends MHA’s decision to extend BSF’s jurisdiction in Punjab to 50 km

Centre defends MHA's decision to extend BSF's jurisdiction in Punjab to 50 km

The decision amounts to creating a parallel jurisdiction, ta...

India proposes to host UN climate conference in 2028; launches Green Credit Initiative

PM Modi launches initiative focusing on generating green credits through plantation on degraded wasteland

Prime Minister says Green Credits Initiative surpasses comme...


View All