We have had a new restaurant open near to where I live in Stretford, Manchester and it’s right on the main road opposite the shopping mall. Prime position for passing motorists and shoppers. It came in kit form and they had it built and opened within a few short weeks.
I visited on the second day of opening, with my daughter and grandson, and there was slightly more staff than customers. They were friendly and welcoming and we were guided to the new pre-pay machines, the only ones in this area, we were told. At the end of our selection, we were given a number, Argos style, and went over to the counter to collect our food. All very different from what we were used to.
As I went to the counter I saw a staff member waiting for a drink to pour to add to a tray of food, mine perhaps. A manager hovered near by and heard him whisper, “Go and greet the customer.”
The smiling assistant came right over. “Hello, you all right?” I don’t quite think that’s what he had in mind. (It’s a Manchester greeting, by the way.)
The drinks were added to the tray, and I was waiting for the mandatory. “Enjoy your meal.” Instead, she shuffled awkwardly away.
It was interesting being part of something so new, after watching it’s progress into the restaurant we all know and are used to.
A couple of weeks later, my husband and I entered the drive-thru – his first experience here.
“Hello, can I take your order?” came the young disembodied voice from the speaker.
“Yes, can I have a large coffee, a small coffee and a tube of milk, please.”
There was a pause, “Right, so that’s one coffee and one tea.” We looked at one another and he repeated the order. There was another pause before she spoke again. “Can you just hang on a minute?”
We looked at each other and grinned. Then out of the mic came her even more muffled voice. “I can’t understand what’s he’s saying. You’ll have to do it.” We looked at each other with amusement. Hubby rolled his eyes.
“Sorry about this, can I take your order?” asked a male voice.
“Erm, yes,” Hubby tried to control his laughter. “Can I have,” and in a slower voice said, “One large coffee and one small coffee with a tube of milk.”
“One large and one small coffee,” the man repeated efficiently.
“Yes, that’s right,” hubby agreed, as I clapped my hands in glee.
“Ask at the second window for the milk,” he added.
We pulled up, and the girl greeted us with, “Hello, here’s your apple pie.”
We did get our drinks eventually, and, as we stopped to put in the milk; I pointed out the wording on the tube. Hold – and above that, it said – Tear.
“Probably for the McDonald’s staff,” hubby grinned.