First, a confession then a story.
Confession: It’s official…first-come-first-serve seating upsets me. Actually, it pisses me off
Behind any reaction and opinion on something there is a likely a story that accounts for why the reaction and opinion was formed. Mine? The first-come-first-serve seating policy on the patio at a bar and grille here in my town ofLexington.
Story: The other day, my girlfriend and I decided it would be nice to go to a certain bar and grille, grab a seat outside, eat some lunch and enjoy the beautiful weather. As we drove to this restaurant, we discussed the sermon we had just listened to and planned on having a grand ol’ time – enjoying each other’s company over a yummy meal.
As we walked up to the patio of the restaurant, we saw there was a wait and so we gladly stood by and waited, looking for tables to open up so we could sit down. We had been there for about 20 minutes when a couple of ladies pranced into the patio. They grabbed a couple of cocktails and chit chatted as they waited on a table. I started getting worried and started hoping that they weren’t going to do what I thought they might do.
And who would’ve guessed – they did it…
They saw a table getting ready to open up that I had been waiting for and proceeded to tell the folks at the table that they were going to do. They stole our table. They clearly saw us and we clearly saw them steal our table. So, I looked at my girlfriend, smiled sarcastically and put my head down and walked. Where? I don’t know, I just had to walk.
Well, tonight after an exhausting evening, I thought: what a great idea it would be to get the family together and spend the nice evening out on the patio of a certain bar and grille!
Yes, it happened again.
Now, you have to understand that very few things get under my skin – other people crunching food when I am tired and apparently seating policies. Other than those things, I am easy going and let things slide. Cut me off in traffic? It just doesn’t bother me! But something about those ladies blatantly taking a table I had been waiting on per the “honor system” made me want to not only turn over the table but also ask them in a not-so-gracious-way if they were serious! Trust me, I really wanted to say something. I wanted them to know how I felt about their injustice to my lunch plans!
Then it hit me: did I really just get upset over a table at a restaurant? Did I really have those hostile feelings toward two other people?
That’s the thing about grace – it isn’t easily angered. It looks at two middle-aged ladies who steal tables from college kids at restaurants and says “whatever…it’ll be fine.” And guess what? I ended up having a great lunch with my girlfriend and we enjoyed the weather and had amazing conversations about grace and how offering it to others can pop up even in the most unlikely places.
So, tonight, as I waited in “line” on the patio, I saw what was going to happen so I picked up my phone, called my family and suggested we eat somewhere else. Perhaps, tonight, the other families on the patio needed the extra family time more than me.
And grace was absolutely correct – it all ended up just fine.