Saturday, December 13, 2014

What's The Beef With Waiter and Waitress

Just why do Waiter and Waitress want us to be rude to them – to be called “stupid” and “mbuzi”? But they force us to use those words on them. They really do.

Nodin was straight to the point. “Do you have one of those bar mats I could use?” Waiter and trying to muster up all his self confidence let out a small whisper: “A mat?” which was followed by a silence and a stare off. Finally Waiter broke the silence and spewed out the unexpected. He said: “You want a mat for sitting on? No, we don’t have any of them.” For his efforts, Waiter earned himself a mouthful of not-so-kind words from us.

On another outing, we asked Waitress how much a beer costs and in a crisp clear voice, she replied: “3k”. Doing our arithmetic, we concluded that with the dime we had, we could afford four bottles each. When she served the first round of drinks, I pulled out 6k and that’s when trouble started. She looked at the 6k with a ‘what is this’ look?

“There is balance of 1k.” I thought I got my sums wrong – but wait a minute, two beers at 3k = 6k not so?  Then she starts the weepy tale. “Now you see, 3k is only for Club, Bell and Nile. The rest are sh3,500.” Why did she have to force us to call her mbuzi under our breath?

I was out in a backwater kafunda near Mbuya barracks with Lucy who has the burden of editing this column and my order was precise. “Tusker, Coke and glass.” I also threw in a ‘please’ for good measure. When she came back, all was well until I saw the glass. It was that small glass, the glass that hotels use for juice at breakfast.

Trying to explain that she had bought a breakfast juice glass instead of a beer glass would not have been a wise move for she would have given me a: “You asked for a glass and I gave you a glass now, quit bitching” look which forced me to slip out a quiet ‘stupid’. 

Winfred, is one of those ladies who is not into confrontation. If Waiter or Waitress makes a mistake, she lets it slide. It’s her philosophy. When Waitress showed up to take the order, this was the very brief spiel.

Waitress: “Yes?”
Winfred: “A Coke please.”

There was no answer from Waitress. She simply turned on her heels and came back with a Krest which she was about to open until I interjected saying: “I think she asked for a Coke not so?”

“But Coke is over” she responded and while she did try to improvise, she might have opted for Pepsi which, is a near twin to Coke. But a Krest and attempt to open it without out consulting the person who had made the order, that was not on. Ugly words came out which did not go down well with her that, for the rest of our stay we got a hostile service.

Waiter and Waitress don’t like polite customers. Period! They want us to be rude to them. To put the case to rest, despite repeated and very polite attempts to get the attention of Waitress by calling out: “Excuse me nyabo”, she stood leaning against a pillar with an: ‘I wonder what’s on Bukedde TV’ look. So I employed a king cobra hiss on her. Her ears perked up and with a positive attitude she scanned the gardens and came scurrying to take my order. Nsenene Hawker who was across the street and who thought the hiss was directed at him also fell in!

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