Today is the birthday of Small Person 2 Of 2. And due to circumstances (not exactly beyond our control!), we went out for a celebratory meal last night. Small Person 2 Of 2 was given free rein to choose the restaurant and with her love of all things American, it came as no surprise when she chose an American Diner a few miles along the coast.
Small Person 2 Of 2 has been talking this restaurant up for the last couple of years ever since she went with a friend for her friend’s birthday and wanted to go last year for hers. Unfortunately for her, the only night we could go near her birthday, the restaurant was shut! So, on a dark damp evening, we travelled the ten miles east to find this eatery.
During the journey Small Person 2 Of 2 was almost drooling as she recalled the burger she had chosen on her last visit. Although she couldn’t recall the name of the burger, she remembered she absolutely loved it. When asked to describe it, she couldn’t remember anything about it!
She did, however, recall and describe perfectly one of the drinks she had chosen and was very much looking forward to having another. It had something to do with bubblegum, so I was intrigued and was looking forward to tasting hers – didn’t think I could cope with one all to myself!
On our arrival at the restaurant, I was somewhat surprised to see the entrance was a long steep ramp which in the rain did not seem that safe to run up!
I was even more surprised on entering the restaurant. I did not know what to expect, but the décor did it justice as an American style diner, but that isn’t why I was surprised. Earlier in the day I had telephoned (several times) to reserve a table and when I eventually got through (after 4 hours of trying!) I was told it would not be necessary to book a table as they are never very busy on a Tuesday night.
Considering how long it had taken to actually get my telephone call answered, I had assumed they would be busy, and there were six tables already taken with about another eight vacant. I was also told, as I had tried to book a table for four, that the tables only catered for four anyway, however the table we were shown to had five seats, and the tables around us each had at least six!
This was not an encouraging start.
Once seated we were given our menus. Small Person 2 Of 2 immediately found the burger she had tried to describe earlier and had selected her drink. I had barely had time to open the menu! She showed me the choice of flavours – Green Apple; Blue Bubblegum; Berry Lemonade; Red Apple; Fufu Berry; MF Grape; Strawberry & Lime; OJ & Cream Soda; Rootbeer; Cream Soda. Ten different flavours in all.
When the waiter took the drinks order, Small Person 2 Of 2 asked for her chosen flavour – Blue Bubblegum. The waiter’s response brought with it some disappointment. Of all the ten flavours the only flavour …
… you’re expecting me to say the only flavour they didn’t have was Blue Bubblegum aren’t you?
The only flavour they had was Red Apple!
Out of ten possibilities they had one!
Reluctantly Small Person 2 Of 2 ‘chose’ Red Apple. The waiter went off to get the drinks whilst we continued perusing the menu for our meal choice. Moments later he returned with more bad news – they had run out of Red Apple!
In other words they were out of stock of all ten flavours.
This was not turning out to be the best birthday meal and on top of all that, they had the cheek to add on a ‘discretionary’ service charge! Surely if it was a discretionary charge, they shouldn’t have added it on in the first place – we as the customer would decide whether we wanted to add something to the bill for the service!
I don’t think I’ll be rushing back!