A Dinner Time Nightmare – Dinner Debacle
How a sophisticated meal,
turned into an ordeal!!
A tale of a fine dining fiasco, when a mother took her kids for a meal at a high-end restaurant.
Patidev and I decided to take our kids to this newly opened fine dining restaurant the other day. And folks, I have no qualms in admitting it as one of our biggest mistakes.
Now we can never go there again.
It all started when we noticed a sparkling new eatery in our locality.
We were eager to put it to the test. Patidev and I consider judging and trying out these brand-new, untouched eating places part of our moral and social obligation and sovereign duty as responsible citizens. (I strongly feel it should be a part of the constitution).
Now, most of the time (Nah..all the time), we usually venture out on those expeditions (read moral responsibilities)sans kids; but, this time, we thought of taking our kids along.
I don’t know if it was the air of that Japanese/Teppanyaki restaurant or my karma came calling. That day, the usually well-behaved kids changed their spots, unleashing their true colors as soon as we entered the said restaurant.
First, between the two of them, they couldn’t decide which table to take. The son(7 years) wanted to sit in the corner by the chef and the daughter(3 years) beside the window.
For quite some time, the family went around in circles, like a merry go around, holding hands with one child each, till they finally relented and showed us some mercy.
We ended up taking the center table to be equidistant from both the chosen and preferred corners. All this time, I had paid particular attention to avoid catching the head waiter’s eye.
After a long time, the seating plan was finalized; the daughter preferred to sit beside her father, and the son chose not to sit next to his sister…Oh!! What a mess!
Now it was time for the kids to scan and scrutinize the table for its undiscovered and uncharted treasures. The older one spotted the chopsticks, and it was like, love at first sight. Those blasted chopsticks decidedly became “the object of his affection” for that evening.
He turned them this way and that way, and voila!! A new performing art was born. He was so impressed and proud of his new doodad that he looked around to check for any undercover audience with an inspecting and a sifting air.
At that instant, his sister experienced a major FOMO (fear of missing out), so she decided to follow suit.
Very soon (the food was yet to arrive, guys !), we had a pair of star troupers at our table. They displayed their newly found “chopsticks shaking skills” with such vigor and energy that a part of me believed that we could have made some money if they had been out on the street performing.
The son, of course, felt it was time to take it up a notch. Thank the Lord for those parental instincts, for Patidev managed to catch his hand, just in time, before he could lower the chopstick towards that dastardly candle. I tremble at the very thought of what could have been. To come to think of it, we could have put the table, or the restaurant, or the building on fire.
A while later, the breadbasket made its grand entrance. The little one (the daughter) took no time declaring that the corners of the slices of bread were too hard and had to be taken off.
The poor father, conferred with the honors, finished the job in question. I wanted to burst into a peal of maniacal laughter. But I concealed it well, behind a cover of a polite smile, as I watched the Patidev, lovingly butchering, those slices of bread for her majesty.
Eventually, after a long wait, the main course arrived. Straight away, after the first bite, my little angel declared that it was probably the worst food she had ever eaten. Taking a dim view of my hearing and understanding ability, she determinedly announced her extreme dislike and displeasure after every morsel I coaxed her to take.
The Patidev meanwhile alternated between throwing those amused surreptitious glances at me to looking down and rubbing down his forehead, failing miserably to hide his amused smile.
Ultimately after much torment, distractions, and suffering, we concluded our meal. The whole exercise was punctuated by repeated episodes of grub and drinks falling over and collecting under the furniture, serviettes flying around, and table- cloth just at the brink of being pulled down.
Thank God, Patidev caught it in time. Just in time, every time.
Silently, sheepish and shamefaced, we walked out, mentally vowing, never to return.
However, my mind was busy browsing the innards of the refrigerator. I knew I had to concoct some form of a dinner at home, for the little one had hardly eaten anything.
Getting in the car, the son inquired,” Why is it called fine dining, Mum? “
I kept quiet and smiled a knowing smile. (unspoken words being, it really should have been called “un-fine dining” because that was exactly how I was feeling at that moment).
Picture Credit-Karen Fedida/ Unsplash