I skipped lunch when I left Montreal -- I thought I'd feel more alert for trying to navigate to downtown Montreal and then find my way back to the expressway home on an empty stomach. I watched for places along the way, but eventually decided to stop in Burlington, Vermont for dinner. I had planned to eat a churrascaria restaurant I had seen on my way through before, but which was too busy on Thursday night. I thought they wouldn't be too busy at 4pm on Sunday and I could grab a meal. Unfortunately they were closed. The Mexican place was closed too. In fact, every restaurant downtown seemed closed until at least 5pm. I spotted a "Euro Gourmet Market & Cafè" that was open and then noticed they had a menu with food. There was an item on the menu called "Bosnian Mess" -- no real description except to say it had some kind of beef and that you could get it spicy -- that I simply had to try.
It was kind of a scary place inside: it looked like a messy house, with old sofas and boxes stacked on the floor. The counters were covered with half-full and empty bottles. There was a data projector dangling from the ceiling from what appeared to be shoe-laces. It was projecting a soccer game (Madrid Real vs Sevilla) on a bedsheet or piece of paper tacked up on the wall. The proprietor was nonchalant: "You want something?"
I ordered the Bosnian Mess -- spicy -- and was directed to sit down. The woman cleaned the table for me, but didn't offer to bring me anything to drink. Another nearby table was left unbussed. Eventually some little girls came running out of a back room with a grandmother trailing behind. One of the girls began eating from the unbussed table (which I assumed meant it had been her plate -- not that she routinely started eating whatever was left behind).
When the plate of food came, the fellow set it on the table and tossed down a couple of paper napkins. But no silverware -- and still nothing to drink. I asked for a glass of water, which he eventually brought.
The Bosnian Mess actually turned out to be a sort-of panini with big green leaves, red oily sauce, and slices of some kind of dark red sausage. It was not at all what I had imagined from the meager description. It was actually a lot like two pieces of greek pizza stuck together and fried on both sides. It wasn't exceptionally good, but was perfectly tasty. And, as I'm still OK today, I appear to have escaped without getting food poisoning or anything. I got back on the road well before 5pm, but without my churrascaria.