There was a time when my wife and I could slip into a quiet restaurant on a Friday evening and enjoy a nice meal.
Put us on the waiting list! We’ll hang at the bar until our table is ready! Awesome!
Now, with three kids, we are a party of five. Without Neve Campbell and Matthew Fox.
Now, we require a minivan to go anywhere.
Now, we are a traveling tornado of loud.
And never was that more on display that a recent trip we took to Nando’s PERI-PERI, one of our favorite restaurants. Our local Nando’s is in a mall; they play loud music – all the signs of a kid-friendly experience.
At this location, the host assigns you to a numbered table, which is tied to your food order. [Remember this.]
It was no surprise when they put us, all five us plus Auntie Loo-Loo, in a big corner in the back of the restaurant. Right next to the bathrooms, which I greatly appreciated.
Sitting at the the table next to us was an elderly woman. Her dining companion was ordering food when we arrived – complete with baby asleep in the large red stroller, son dripping wet after swim lessons, daughter whining about….who knows what.
“Oh, heck no!” the woman said.
She then proceeded to get up, unfold her metal walker, and slowly cross the restaurant to get a new table, as far away from us as humanly possible. Table number, be damned!
An elderly woman who has trouble walking basically ran away from us. And ruined the restaurants seating system in the process.
Look – some people may be embarrassed by this.
Luckily, we aren’t those people.
I know what my family is right now. We’re loud. We fill up a room. We’re awesome.
We’re also not for everyone.