Time For Billing, God Willing

| Working | July 10, 2016

(We have eaten a perfectly good meal and receive friendly, polite, and timely service throughout. As is usual for us, we were equally, friendly, polite, and cordial. Then at the end of the meal we get this:)

Waitress: “Is there anything else you would like?”

Me: “No, can we have the bill, please? We need to get on.”

(Five minutes later, no bill. Waitress is chatting away with another table — not taking an order as such, just chatting and being friendly. I try to wave her over but she doesn’t see me.)

Me: *calling over to her* “Excuse me.” *but she doesn’t respond, and vanishes*

Waitress: *ten minutes later* “Oh, yes, you guys. Was there anything else you wanted?”

(We’re clearly sitting at a completely cleared table apart from the empty coffee cups and sugar and cream sachets, and we have gathered our things to go. I’m practically waving my card in her face.)

Me: “No, I’ve been waiting for you to bring us the bill.”

Waitress: *with her brightest, most friendly smile* “Oh, yes, of course. I’ll get it to you as soon as.”

(She actually returns with the bill, and leaves it with us. I read it, put it back on the plate with my debit card, and wait for her to return. Ten minutes later she returns once more, bringing out food for another table. I wave her over but she’s too busy. And so it goes. Eventually, 45 minutes after having finished, she finally comes over with a debit machine, which she seems about to leave with us to operate while she goes off to do something else.)

Me: “No, sorry, can you stay with us while we sort this out? We’re on a bit of a tight schedule and we’re already quite late.”

Waitress: “Yes, okay. No problem.” *although you could see she is jigging up and down on the spot as though anxious to get away and do something else*

(Eventually we got out of that place nearly an hour after we’d been ready to depart. We got back to the car and found it had been ticketed because we’d overstayed our allotted time by 10 minutes, and had a fine of £60 to pay to the authorities.)

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