Saturday, 18 July 2020

A time and a place

On Thursday we had bookings for High Tea, our special sandwiches, cakes and scones extravaganza.
In previous seasons we took bookings for larger numbers but if a visitor strolled in and fancied one we could do it. We’ve had to move this season to bookings only.

Five ladies turned up for theirs at 12 and took their time over a catch-up, food and tea. As they left they rebooked, same table same options, for next month.
The other table was for three High Teas at 1pm.
I’d had a phone call a few days earlier from a man who wanted to bring his mum (for her birthday) and his grandfather. He was so happy we we’re still doing an afternoon tea and had availability, said he’d called so many places who weren’t doing them at the moment or couldn’t fit them in.
I told him about the large garden and the gazebo situation and he said he’d like a table under one of those, said he would prefer to be outside.
He asked if we would put a candle in one of the scones for his mum.
No problem at all.
I was surprised when they hadn’t arrived by 1.30 and at 1.45 I rang his number.
I thought I may have the date wrong, or the day, or the time.
He had called me from work when he booked, was stressed and had, remember, called lots of places. He couldn’t remember exactly where he had booked so, when he picked up his grandad, he called one of the previously called numbers and asked if his reservation was with them.
They said yes.
So when I rang him he said he was indeed having tea with his mum and grandfather.
Somewhere else.
He was very apologetic.
We ate the sandwiches.

Yesterday he arrived at the tearooms to apologise in person.
He offered to pay for the High Teas.
He scanned the garden and told me the rest of the story.
When he took my call he was shocked and mortified but his mother was angry. She was cross that the other place had wrongly told him they had his reservation.
So he went to challenge them.
They admitted that they didn’t have the booking, they thought one of their staff may have failed to write it down and didn’t want to let anyone down.
I don’t think there was anything malicious in it at all. They thought they were doing the right thing.

I hope he will come back one day and bring his mum.
She deserves to sit in our garden eating scones and drinking tea and hearing from me what a lovely, classy young man she has brought up.
I was very impressed that he turned up and very happy to show him what he had missed...

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