Opportunity missed

Yesterday OH and I decided to use a Groupon I had purchased for a gourmet burger special at Karibu at the Waterfront. I called ahead and was told there was no need to book. On arrival we were shown to a table, there were very few diners left as it was just coming to the end of lunch time.

Kak restuarant

We were given menus but they did not list any burgers at all and when the waiter came back and saw our Groupon voucher his whole attitude changed. He presented us with a small laminated card on which the “gourmet burgers” were listed and left.

The wine list was extensive with everything on the pricey to exorbitant side, the price of a very average glass of wine was between R40 and R60 so we declined and had a soft drink instead. The waiter eventually came back and took our orders and after a reasonable wait our food was delivered by another waiter who might have been more senior.

The food was OK, not amazing, not something I would pay their full price for. Too much food for a burger meal in my opinion. The best item was the onion rings.

From here things went downhill, our waiter ambled past more times than I could count, clearly not busy, and never made eye contact with our table. The waiter who delivered our food did the same. Our waiter stood at the bar counter with his back to us 70% of the time. He checked on us once only. I would have liked another cool drink but I could not get his attention. It took more than 15 minutes from the time we finished eating till he came back to the table to ask if everything was alright.

If this had been in the height of a lunch time rush I would have been cool with it but he appeared to be deliberately ignoring us and I am sure it is because we had a Groupon voucher. Maybe he thought us cheapskates and unlikely to tip well. This became a self-fulfilling prophecy as we were so irritated that we gave him a below normal tip and he had a lot to say about it. OH told him he was lucky to get what he did because he did not deserve it at all.

Here’s what I don’t understand, when restaurants do a deal with Groupon or any of the other such schemes they do it, I would suppose, to get more people to their restaurant but this comes at a cost of heavily discounted food. Think of it as an alternative advertising spend. Why then do they treat their newly won customers with such disdain? If I was a restaurateur I would make sure my wait staff were well briefed to give voucher holders the same, if not better service, than other patrons. Surely this is when you go all out to impress to ensure that they come back again and again and happily pay the full price.

Only twice have we had exceptional service with a discount voucher. The rest of the occasions have been mediocre at best but we have always tipped on the value of the undiscounted meal. But to be treated so badly in what is an upmarket restaurant annoyed us both so much that we felt a normal tip completely unwarranted. Needless to say we won’t be going back.

Sadly this is not the first time we have had an experience like this with a discount voucher and I now feel far less inclined to take up these offers and try a new restaurant when I can get far superior service at our local Spur. 

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A week I don’t want to repeat

Hello Blogpeeps

Thank God it’s Friday, this has been a truly testing week. I finally got my domain sorted 15 days after first requesting a small change which the ISP understood as a license to experiment with settings to the extent that I was unable to communicate with my clients.

The annual luncheon that I arrange for my major client was on Wednesday. The venue got it so wrong in spite of this being the 10th year that we have had the function there. The service was dismal, the food appalling in quality and quantity and the presentation left a lot to be desired. It was not for lack of staff, there were plenty but they seemed to lack direction and be incapable of being proactive. They milled around uselessly while the food at the buffet ran out and their only response was “its coming”. I must confess that as the organiser of the function I lost it with them a numbe of times.

Don’t even get me started on the “VIP guests” who accept and then don’t bother to pitch leaving the main table with four empty chairs …  If it was up to me they would never get another invite ever!

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Back at the office I wrote a detailed letter to the functions coordinator listing my concerns with the food and the service to which I am yet to receive a response. I have determined not to settle the bill until I am afforded the courtesy of a response containing an apology.

 

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On a happier note its the weekend, we don’t have too much planned but will enjoy the timeout all the more for that. Next week is OH’s last week of work before his retirement and we enter a new stage of life.

Have a great weekend Blogpeeps

ISP Fail

My “moer meter” has just tripped. Webafrica have just stuffed up my other domain meaning that I can now not communicate with any of my clients. It would seem that they are trying to put me out of business.

It is Day 13 since they screwed up one domain instead of making a small change to allow it to point email to an internet based distribution list.  Now they have stuffed up the MX records of my other domain so I cannot mail to that list either.

I am fed up to the back teeth with their incompetence and excuses. I am tired of having to explain to my clients why I am not able to deliver the service to which they are accustomed.

I think my son is away on business this week but I have emailed him in the hope that he can intervene. 

Now I am going to have a drink and try and calm down

Unsupported and disconnected

This has been an extremely frustrating and unproductive week. Today is Day 10 of trying to get my service provider to make changes to a domain I administer to enable an internet based mailing list.

In my dealings with my ISP I have probably been ”assisted” by every staff member in the call centre support department except the one that might actually understand what needs to be done and the implications of stuffing everything up.  As a result I have not been able to receive or send email on one of my business accounts and my clients think I have gone AWOL. It has been an endless round of “pass the buck”, fob her off with lies and untruths and the old “bullshit baffles brains” theory.

Today my son J got involved and as he is an IT boff he is able to view the back-end of the domain to check that they have made the correct changes but we are now waiting for the system to propagate whatever the hell that means.

So that is why I have been absent from the blogs and why a certain canine took advantage of my distraction and hijacked my blog, the young upstart. He has been given his marching orders “No squatting on my blog after Monday!”

In contrast to last weekend’s festivities in the way of OH’s 65th birthday party this weekend is looking decidedly dull.  All we have ahead of us are lots of errands / chores to fit into the business part of two days.

But back to the party. OH was delighted that a good friend had driven 250 km to celebrate with him. I let the details of the party unfold slowly as people arrived followed by the better-late-than-never caterers, but as it was a stunning evening everyone was happy to be outdoors until well after midnight. J made a very moving speech and got quite choked up which really touched OH. Three very good friends, one an old school friend of OH’s, made great speeches and OH was truly honoured by all the kind words.

Now I am going to climb into bed with the book I am currently reading, “World without End” by Ken Follet. It is all about the period leading up to and during the First World War and although it is a work of fiction, it is based on well researched historic facts. The narrative is proving to be an incredibly interesting social commentary on the differences between the gentry and the working classes as well as the status of women in both the upper and lower classes. The senseless brutality of war is well described and one cannot imagine how these same countries went to war again in 1939 just a generation later.  I’m getting near the end of the book but as it is the first of a trilogy there’s plenty more to come.

Night night Blogpeeps, have a great weekend J