I’m a firm believer in treating others as you would want to be treated yourself, but, unfortunately, it’s not a motto shared by everyone, as discovered when my parents, daughter and I went out for lunch recently.
The restaurant was in the corner of a large store, and was the sort of place that had a counter for sandwiches, and another for hot dinners.
I very politely asked the man behind the counter for a chicken curry, but was amazed by his response.
He threw my curry on to the plate, stuck a poppadom right on the top of the hot food, and shoved it in my direction.
Service with a smile this was not, but I ignored it and sat down to eat my food.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t ignore the fact that by the time I reached the table, my poppadom was soggy, and when I peeled it off my food, I was stunned to discover what was underneath.
There, in front of me, was a bed of rice and a plate of chicken bones.
I kid you not.
Leg bones, joints, wings, a back bone, short spiky bones, long, fat bones… You name it, I got it.
I couldn’t believe it. What if a child had been given this food?
What if they’d taken a mouthful and choked on a bone?
I’m not usually a restaurant complainer, but this was a health and safety issue, so I took the offending carcass to the counter. The man ignored me completely, so I explained the situation to the waitress.
By this time the male server had seen what was going on and exclaimed: “What’s wrong with her?” to the waitress.
She explained, and he shouted: “I know there are bones in it. what else does she want?” at the top of his voice.
After being called “she” and “her” for the next few minutes, I finally got a substitute dinner.
However, we were so angry about it that we complained to the manager (although the man denied all knowledge of being rude to me – thank goodness for witnesses). We were given a meal voucher, which I appreciate, but even so, I’d have preferred to have been treated with manners in the first place – it would have saved us all time and trouble.
I think the man behind the counter needs to remember the saying :The customer is always right, and if I don’t want to eat a plate full of chicken bones, then I’ll darn well say so, thank you very much.