Sunday, August 21, 2016

Home as Art

I had brunch with a friend on Saturday. She lives in the cutest neighborhood. I always enjoy hanging out with her. She often takes me to new places and I get to know my hometown in new ways. One of our common interests is urban(ish) living.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Happy Pancake Sunday

We have just had one of the best weekends! Pieces of it made me so happy that I could cry. It started with meeting Jordan's brother and his wife and Jordan's sister for dinner.  Our daughter came on Saturday, so we had a mini family gathering weekend which was too much fun. To conclude our time together we went out for a pancake breakfast. What could be better than that? Nothing. 

So, our weekend started on Friday night. We went to a chain restaurant that I suggested...I wanted a special burger with egg. The burger was yum.

When we were ready to either get the check or get dessert (and we weren't sure which) our waitress was nowhere in sight. Like...NOwhere.  I had a small moment of clarity when I realized that they have this tablet type thing at the table with labels that say:  "order more drinks" or "order dessert" or "call your wait staff". Hmm. Perhaps this is why we didn't see our waitress. We hadn't used the correct tools.

So, we decided to order a strawberry milkshake to test the theory that something really happens when you use this machine. --The light turned blue. But no one came to see us. After a while, we saw our waitress and stopped her...asking how we go about getting a milkshake. She looked at the blue light on our table tablet and said something like, "You've done it. You've ordered it. It's coming." Then for clarity, she said, "When the light turns blue your order has been placed." Oh...we get it now. We just needed to be more patient while the magic happened.

Maybe 10 minutes later our waitress comes breathlessly to the table with two milkshakes. --I should clarify that I did actually order two milkshakes. One "regular" size strawberry milkshake and one "monster" strawberry milkshake. Not for me, you understand, for others at the table. Anyway, our waitress triumphantly shows up with two shakes and said, "Here we strawberry milkshake and one chocolate milkshake." For some reason, we all felt the need to say "no...that's not right". This meant we had to wait for the second strawberry milkshake while our waitress walked away with the chocolate one. I'm sure I saw her shaking her head as she walked away. I think she was thinking: "They don't know what they are doing when they use the menu tablet. But...they SAY that they ordered strawberry." 

Okay, an aside, the generation gap was definitely showing Friday! I had been thinking we were still hip, but to figure out that you don't actually talk to the waitress when you want something was a new and confusing experience. It gets worse.

With the second milkshake, the waitress asked how we wanted our checks split up. When we told her three checks, she did some magic on the table tablet and voila, three checks were on the screen. She said, "If you have to pay in cash, you have to pay me. Otherwise, you use this..." and with that, she was gone again. 

I paid first. You would think it would be super easy. You know, like swiping your card at the gas station or the grocery store. I mean, I know how to do that. Wrong. Many confusing screens come on to tell you you've pressed the wrong button. You pressed "gift certificate" when you meant to press "credit". Okay, start over. I felt like I was making progress when the tip screen came up and I agreed to the suggested tip amount. Press enter and ... and.... and blank screen. Nothing. Did the card go through? I don't know. But I can't re-pull my ticket to I guess so.(?) 

Then Sis in Law #1 pays. She also encounters the gift card versus credit card challenge. So, it's not just me. She tipped and then was prompted to sign. At the end, the machine said take your receipt from the bottom. That's like two steps further in the process than I got. Starting to make me question if mine went through. 

Then Sis in Law #2 pays. She has zero trouble and gets all the way to the sign page without hurdles. There was no receipt, but we figured it was out of paper. 

So, we could have left. The light now turned green. But, I really wasn't sure mine went through. So, we tried to wait (patiently) for our waitress to ask her the question. But, while we waited, Sis in Law #1 takes the tablet thing and sticks her knife in the thing. She was just going to stick her knife in and pull out our receipts. Thank goodness the family at the table beside us had left. I'm just not sure sticking a knife in a machine is acceptable behavior.

The receipt came out, but there was nothing on it, so that was a wasted effort. Then she hit the button that said, "call your wait staff".  The light now started blinking red. You know...sort of like if you are on a plane and hit the call button...but more annoying. 

What was odd was that after our table tablet started flashing red we saw our waitress. But she didn't come. I'm convinced by now that this thing doesn't work. Finally, she comes over to clear out the call button. The three of us, Sis in Law #1 and #2 and I start to talk at once. "I'm not sure mine went through", I say. "Did the light turn green?" "yes" "Then it went through. You are done." "But, "says Sis in Law #2, "it didn't ask her to sign." Our waitress clearly thinks we are out passed our nursing home curfew.  

Yeah, that was fun. 

The weekend just got better from there! 

More later.