In my last article, I stated “As broke as a campuser”. I thought I had exaggerated a little but then it really hit me. Ok ring ring, the bell for lunch goes and some students head to disserted lecture rooms where no one will notice they dodged lunch. Others go to Shrink.
What is Shrink, you will ask. Shrink (not real name) is a restaurant in Nyamirambo where some students go to have lunch. Then you’ll ask me why. Shrink is like a kilometer away from KIST but as you may already guess, it is so blissfully cheap that the distance is irrelevant to the students.
Getting to Shrink, the first thing you will notice is wooden chairs that must have been made out of wood broken off another piece of furniture and piece by piece, put together. The tables are like a tree that was just leveled. Don’t tell them about furnishing it. You can clearly see why the food is so cheap.
Next comes the ordering and don’t be deceived by the price. This restaurant has food that is served in all the big restaurants where the working class eat from only that this time they give you the chance to explore your stomach size to the fullest. They give you two plates, one for sauce and another for the food.
It is all there... just fill your plate and go. Don’t worry about the embarrassment of being in Shrink because once people walk in, they eat and pretend no one is looking at them because everyone else there is also doing the same. Wow, okay the plates may be really old and some even faded, but the food is delicious. And after a meal, bottles of homemade juice are passed around for those that have an extra Frw100. However, I wouldn’t call it juice, water with fruits in it sounds a lot more accurate.
Now where does this Shrink name come from? Judging by the distance and considering that lunch is usually in the afternoon when the sun is at its highest, the place is simply a disaster. Going for lunch and coming back is not worth that one plate. So the logic is that after this journey, one just shrinks instead of growing fat and healthy but the psychological satisfaction is that they ate enough food to last them about two days!