Customer service? Pfffft

December 23, 2012
By

It’s nearly the end of the year, so it must be time for me to have another rant: this time it’s about a large, well-known cafe at a local department store.

Nick and I went there the other day for lunch. We looked at the specials sign outside the door and decided the menu looked reasonably appealing (hey, it was mid afternoon and I needed to find some lunch so I could take my heart pills, the offerings weren’t spectacular but they were okay-ish).

issues-burgundyAfter queuing for what seemed like an eternity but what was probably really somewhere between five and 10 minutes, the wee chicky babe at the counter informed us that no, we couldn’t order anything from the menu because the kitchen had closed.

I told her we had only come in because of the items listed on their specials board at the door and, after rolling her eyes, she informed me the sign was no longer there.

Well it was fecking there when we arrived, not our fault we had to wait so long to be served. Anyway, after suggesting they should actually have the time fact the kitchen closes part-way through the afternoon noted on their sign, I said we’d go elsewhere.

But no, we would still have to pay for sandwich and cake Nick had put on the tray as we made our way along the queue to be served.

I didn’t want anything they had to offer because of health issues: I’m diabetic and have a slightly buggered heart (hence the medication and pending surgery).  I didn’t want a salt-laden ham sandwich or one of the luminous yellow pastry things lurking in their food cabinets. I was hoping to order soup. I tried to order soup. I got an eye roll and attitude in response.

This isn’t the first time I struck this at this same cafe: earlier in the year we went there one Saturday and discovered the kitchen had closed (it was earlier in the day) and once again, there was no indication of this until we got to the end of the counter and tried to order.

And again, I got attitude.

Anyway, I told the cheese-roll jockey serving us that we had come into the cafe only because of the sign outside, which gave no indication the kitchen was already closed. Eventually she went off to see her manager, then came back to the counter and told me we wouldn’t have to pay.

That was something, I suppose. An apology for the rude attitude would have been better.

And before anyone mutters anything about it being close to Christmas, overworked staff etc, shut it! We’re all in the same boat and I”m pretty sure that if I started taking out my pre-Christmas mood on our readers and advertisers, my boss would be spitting sparks.

Besides, the last time I got bad service and bad attitude there it wasn’t Christmas, it was just a quiet Saturday afternoon.

 

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Jillian "George" Allison-Aitken

I live in the deep south of New Zealand, where smelly dairy cows are taking over from sheep in the livestock stakes. My hometown is the small but perfectly formed city of Invercargill, which is also the hometown of the original boy racer, Burt Munro. Find out more about me here.

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