Living in The Philippines > Philippine Culture, Filipino Family Relationships

Left Scratching My Head!

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Not sure this is the correct board, but I'm sure it will end up in the right place.

Last Monday night, we dropped our (UK) daughter and husband at Clark for their flight home.

On the way back, we popped into a local coffee shop in Dinalupihan, for a bite to eat. The main branch is in the provincial capital of Balanga, about 25 miles away and, AFAIK the branch in our town is the only one outside of there.

My wife ordered a pasta dish and I ordered an omelette. I noticed on the menu that they had a choice of plain, shrimp, cheese or spinach. I asked for a plain one and then said, as an afterthought, make sure it doesn't have any cheese. (I'm not partial to  egg and cheese cooked together.) Yes sir the counter girl said, I'll just check if it is available and let you know in 2 or 3 minutes. I didn't ask who she was checking with, as I assumed (my bad, my bad, my bad) it would be with the kitchen.

We sat down and after about 15 minutes, up comes the wife's pasta. Being used to the Filipino way of serving food, I said to the wife, dig in before it gets cold. Well, we waited and we waited and we waited for mine to appear, until finally the wife called one of the waiters across and asked, in her sarcastic voice, which went over the waiter's head LOL!, how long does it take to make a 2 egg omelette?
I'll go and check madam, he said and off he went. He came back with the manager, who was very apologetic and said the hold up was, and believe this or not , he had to get permission from their main branch to cook and serve a "plain omelette", as their "plain omelette" as advertised on their menu, had cheese in it and they had to account for any non-standard fare!!!!!

I really couldn't keep a straight face and burst out laughing, nearly upsetting the water on the table! Even the wife was speechless.

The omelette, when it eventually came some 25 minutes after the wife's pasta, was cooked to perfection, served with some nice lightly toasted brown bread on the side. Complimentary fries as well, as a softener I suppose.

But I'm still scratching my head though. at what the branch has to go through for, to us anyway, such a simple dish.

More fun in the Philippines  :) :) :)



We have had similar experiences, but as noted here elsewhere by other people, the "best" (worst?) line that we get is, "Sorry, we don't have that available" ...

At least you got to, finally, enjoy the meal.


Welcome to the Philippines. Don't feel too bad about that experience. This is even better. We live in the Far Provience and on our way from Manila at about 7 PM. We stopped at the New Shakey restaurant in San Jose, Nueva Echija ( not sure of the spelling.) Ordered food, pasta and some appetisers and drinks. Everything was served except the main meal for three of us. Well we waited 15 minutes, no food, 30 minutes no food. Wife asked where is the food. I will go check said the waitress, she did not return so now it is 45 minutes. We went to the cashier and paid for what was served. Just as we were walking out the food was placed on the counter. Too late we kept walking.
Just cannot understand what went wrong, Someone not doing their job.

This stuff is normal.  Went to the local Greenwich Pizza joint.  I wanted to get my order to go.  Wife was in the hospital overnight and I wanted to bring pizza there for her and me and our boys who were all there.

Go up to the counter(no-one else was in line and maybe 4 tables in the dining area were filled) and order 2 of the "double double" deals(4 pizzas total) and was charged the right amount and given a receipt with the right amount.  But, even from the front counter area, I could hear all the fun and games going on back in the kitchen.  I knew then there were going to be issues.  This was about 7pm.

Now, I've done this a lot of times.  This was very accurately at least my 60th time ordering this type of order from that exact location of Greenwich.  Be it company coming that we didn't expect or just too lazy to cook or what have you.  And typically it's a 15-20 minute wait even when busy and a lot is happening.

So, 15 minutes pass....20 minutes pass....25 minutes pass....I go ask for the manager(night shift manager).  The manager comes and asks what the issues is.  I tell him...he disappears into the kitchen for over 5 more minutes and comes out to tell me it will be another 15 minutes.  I ask why, he stumbles over his words and says something completely unintelligible.  I ask him to tell me again as I couldn't understand.  He says wait please as he disappears back into the kitchen for another 5 minutes at least.  Then he comes out with 2 pizzas. They were cold.

I was pissed and demanded my money back.  Got home and called the national number.  Told them what went on.  They said they'd look into it.  I went back a few days later.  The main general manager that I've talked to more than a few times when I dined in and he walk the floor checking on customers saw me and came to talk to me.  Asked me what happened.  I told him the whole story.  The manager(night manager) at that time was new from another store and only been there for about a month.  He pulled relatives from his former store to come work and that night they were all working and he had more than a few complaints from the music blasting in the kitchen to all the yelling going on and all.  When I asked him why he hired him he said he didn't and that upper management placed him at the Catarman location. 

He didn't last long before he was moved on along with his family. 

I decided to move the topic based on the direction I thought it was going to head, which IMO is tunnel vision, yet it could have stayed right where it was, I just thought this section would be better for members and readers to learn from it.

A lot of people seem to have tunnel vision, IMO more so in the Philippines, seen from my personal perspective and experiences, in fact I posted a topic about that somewhere before, from Burger King whose French fry machine was not working, so they would only sell A la carte and lose sales left and right as I stood there, because their meal deal cost less than a soda and whooper would cost and there was no reasoning with the manager to charge me for a meal deal and just not give me the fries. Then there is when visiting any restaurant, be sure to ask what is in stock before even bothering to read the menu and wasting time asking how this or that is, only to be told after you order it that it is out of stock, Then one of the worst IMO was a restaurant right next to the supermarket who had run out of the soda my wife likes, in fact they had run out of all soda, so instead of sending a worker 50 feet to buy soda for p25 or less which they sell for p100 in that restaurant, the answer was out of stock and they lost the profit they could have made.  :o

And then there are many stores the same thing happens in, they lose a sale because they cannot think outside the box, such as in a store selling buy one get one of an item the same price, so they only have one of the one we want such as a sodas an example, so we pick up a can of another soda that cost exactly the same, only to be told that they both have to be the same soda, so I tell them they are out of the other soda, they only had one and I do not want two of the ones they have plenty of, and they would rather lose a sale than use common sense that a sale is better than no sale.

The Philippines is on a planet that often seems to me to be Klingon, it just does not compute many times for me, yet I roll with the punches and laugh them all off and love being there, for the most part. If a person cannot roll with the punches they will no doubt get while living in the Philippines then they either should not live there or should have someone else do their shopping and only eat at home and in fact, maybe only stay home because tunnel vision affects just about everything we might come in contact with. YMMV


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