While I generally consider myself a good person, there are some incidents in my life which greatly contradict this notion that I have of myself. One incident which quickly comes to mind involves my encounter with a waiter at a restaurant I frequent a few months back. I had decided to take a couple of my friends for a treat and I chose Horizon Restaurant as the venue of choice; more because of the friendly rates than anything I must admit.
When we arrived at the restaurant, it was virtually empty and the ambience was more than I could have hoped for. The waiter, who introduced himself as Gregory, came around to take our order. My friends and I placed our orders and sat back waiting to be served. The waiter came back in five minutes laden with our hot dishes. I am not certain what caused him to trip but he lost balance and while he managed to recover in time to salvage most of the dishes he was carrying, he couldn’t avoid pouring a bowl of soup on me.
“How dare you!” I exclaimed with all the indignation I could muster.
“I’m I very sorry! Let me help you get cleaned up,” replied the waiter who was obviously distressed by the turn of events.
“Oh, that won’t be necessary you incompetent fool!” I shouted leaving my friends all very visibly shocked.
“Excuse me, but this was an honest accident. Let me at least get your shirt cleaned for you”
“What exactly do you know about expensive silk shirts?” My tone was condescending at best as I said this.
By now the commotion had attracted the attention of the person I assumed was the manager in charge of the restaurant and he promptly made his way to our booth. Before the waiter could plead his case, I had bombarded the manager with my complaints. I accused the waiter of incompetence and proceeded to indignantly demand that I should be compensated for having been made to bear through such poor services. I must have thrown quite a feat since the manager actually proposed that I pay only half of the bill.
Needless to say, my lunch with my friends was ruined and I could sense their disapproval at my actions. As we ate, the air around was tense and I cursed myself for the outburst which had messed what would otherwise have been a memorable lunch.
My friends finished their meals in a rush and politely declined my offer for drinks. We left the restaurant and as I walked homewards, I couldn’t help feeling remorseful for my actions.
The next time I visited the restaurant, I did not see Gregory the waiter. On asking around, I was told that he had been fired following some incident with a customer. It was then that the repercussions of my actions hit me. I felt very bad about my behaviour and more so the results.
Since then, I am always keen to be polite and overly accommodative to waiters at all the restaurants I visit. As a matter of fact, I tip generously and generally try to be cordial with the waiters. I know this is mostly as penance for what I did to the waiter at Horizon restaurant but I must admit; I am a better person because of this experience.