NO MORE PARKING
The Dis-Service Industry
Today, being Mothering Sunday, we anticipated lunch at ‘The Park’, Hornbeam Park, Harrogate, a table for four having been booked, by my younger step-daughter Cathy, three weeks ago. As we ventured down there, Cathy received a ‘phone call from her sister Beth saying that they wouldn’t acknowledge that a booking had been made. My step-daughter then wondered whether the table had been booked in her name or her mum’s name.
No attempt to accommodate us was made, apart from a begrudging “sorry” from the girl who was checking off the customers as they arrived. She had earlier suggested to Beth that if we waited a certain amount of time there might be a table free but, this same amount of waiting time was quoted to us some ten minutes after it was first suggested. I could see no reason why they could not have arranged that we used one of the tables in the waiting area, closer to the bar, an area in which we usually dine; that was an offer not forthcoming. Presumably it would be far too much trouble for them.
By this time, I took the hump and exclaimed loudly (in front of the waiting queue) how abysmal it is to have a booking accepted three weeks earlier which they then refuse to acknowledge; I then departed the venue. Cathy then told my beloved that she didn’t want to have the meal if I wasn’t there, after all it was meant to be a family event.
Fortunately, I had prepared two casserole dishes, last evening, of a hybrid Jalfrezi / Tikka Masala /Madras, intended for consumption on Monday and Tuesday. So, on our return home, I popped the casseroles in the oven and set about preparing some of my special spiced rice.
An ‘Hurtado Special Reserve Chardonnay, 2004’ really complemented the curry dish. At home, we had better portions and probably better quality food than we would have received at the dis-service industry venue. We had previously suspected that portions decreased, simultaneously with a price increase, when ‘The Hornbeam’ pub revamped, changing it’s name to ‘The Park’ (a “Contemporary Dining Experience”). Helen and I took a while to visit the venue after the tarting up operation, even though we fairly frequently attended it in its former manifestation but, we did eventually visit the refurbished venue on a number of occasions. We will not be visiting again!
The change of venue, to our home, provided us with a more than satisfactory family affair.