The life of the lonely waiter is complicated and fraught with many dangers.

In the beginning we served the food ourselves and some of us still do at the odd gathering.

It was a skill that couldn’t be taught. Many of us were thrown in at the deep end and expected to just know how to serve food to the masses.

You basically had three types of ‘staff’. The senior guy who sits behind the deg (large metal pot), the go-between (the guy who hands the serving bowls to the waiters) and of course the lowly waiters...normally the peasant types.

All three had to work in tandem for the system to work. We also had the ‘hangers-on’ – the people who chip in here and there on all three levels so later they can boast about how much work they did.

One upstart would always decide to take charge but is soon told to ‘know his place’.

The system however efficient did not take into account the rudeness of the guests. It could be a religious gathering or a celebration but an ‘Asian guest’ will always take advantage of being served upon.

We like nothing better than to demean the waiters because that makes us feel superior for just that one moment. And boy do we revel in it.

If the rotee is cold - send it back. If there is nothing but shorba in the curry bowl – send it back. If the rice has too many bones in it – send it back.

It is only a matter of time before someone uttered…’This is now how the rottee should be served. The kids of today are useless.’ The worse thing that can happen is when inexperienced waiters in their teens come across someone who is a seasoned ‘dawat’ server. The latter will go about ordering the young men on purpose to show his authority.

Here, for this one hour the paindu will order the **** out of the medical student. Later, in the post dinner analysis he will further demean the young people in front of their parents by telling them they have no culture and are generally stupid.

Then there was one role that made us all proud to be Asian. His one job was to make full cola bottles out of the half empty ones with a funnel.

As the dinner was taking place this poor chap was sat in the corner filling up 7-Up bottles.

And then he did that thing only a brother will real respect for his host will ever do - when the mineral water ran dry he simply went to the sink and filled it with tap water. And nobody is any wiser.