anger, Food, Inspiration, Uncategorized, Whatever

Curry and customer services.

I work at the sharp end of customer services. I spend my days thanking people for something. Often apologising for the lateness of something, whether its the delay for an appointment, a letter being held up, or more often than not a professional who is running late, because of the complexities of the job. I’m used to juggling things, and over the years I’ve honed the skills to avoid dropping those balls I’m furiously keeping in the air!  So I know what you need to be a good customer service provider.

Above all you need to be attentive to the people who are your customers, and you need to keep your eye on all those balls your juggling. You also need to make sure your team are well trained, and you have rigorous Standard Operating Procedures . That way everyone is clear of their expectations and your not let down by someone who doesn’t understand what is expected of them.

Let me tell you what happened last night. I went out for dinner with my husband who insisted that as it was his birthday we go out for a curry. Great I thought, we both love curry, and had been to the restaurant before, so knew what to expect.

We ordered a drink which arrived promptly. And I asked for some poppadum’s to keep us going (which actually never arrived). We ordered our meal. A starter to share. My husband ordering two 1/2 portions of something hot and tasty, while I had a rice dish, and some nan bread between us. She asked if we wanted rice, I said no, my hubby would have some of mine, as he only ever eats a small amount of rice. She went away, and we waited for out meal. The surrounding were calm and quite. The restaurant wasn’t 1/4 filled, and there were ample serving staff. I’m setting the scene, as its often the busy times and staff shortages that cause the most problems, believe me!

It never occurred to me that she didn’t get the order right. It also didn’t occur to me that she hadn’t read the order back to us to confirm she had understood what we had asked for.

The food arrived, and it was wrong. She had completely got my food order wrong. Instead of a biryani – a rice dish, it was a vegetable bhuna – a very different dish altogether. So she took it away. But  after 5 minutes I had to go and ask for them to take my husbands food away too, so it could come back out with mine. I wanted to eat with him, not have his food sitting getting cold on the table!

One of the waiters came and apologised, and offered us a drink as a token. We thanked him, and we would have a coffee or another beer after the meal. 5 min later two more beers arrived.

The main meals came back as ordered, together with a fresh nan bread.  Each person who served us apologies for the error, so it felt like the whole team has been involved in the disaster!  If only she had read the order back to us in the first place, it wouldn’t have happened, they wouldn’t have lost at least  £40 in free beers, replaced foods, loss of tips (sorry I couldn’t bring myself to leave anything) and a cancelled booking for later on in the week!

Is it any wonder the high streets are suffering? Restaurant chains are cutting back and  shutting branches. They now have to be on the top of their game to entice people to spend their hard earned cash in them.  They need to get it right, or loose profit and customers.

 

 

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Animals and birds, Food, Laughter, Uncategorized

Sleeping on the job

What do you expect! It tiring paddling around looking for food, dodging the boats. I’m up early at the crack of dawn normally, its those birds who sing the dawn chorus that wake us up.

Give it a break! The weeds in the water tickle your webs. Whew! And then the fish, swimming underneath you – is nowhere safe?

I came onto the bank to get away – and people throw bread and seeds at me! I can’t tell you how much I’d love something different. The bread – it makes me feel so bloated. I’ll never get back to my youthful figure again, those brown and yellow fluffy feathers made me look so – youthful!

Me and my bird we just want to sleep.

 

 

 

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Families, Family, Food, Inspiration, Laughter, love, real life, Uncategorized, Whatever

Dear Paint Manufacturers

Dear Paint Manufacturers

As a grandparent, a parent and an enthusiastic DIY’r I wonder if I may be so bold as to make a few suggestions for the names of paint? Paint that parents could relate to, instantly imagining what the colour was like. A easily washable paint that didn’t take much work to maintain. You have a captive audience here I think, and I feel you’re missing a trick.

I’m asking this as I’ve just had my 1 year old granddaughter for the morning, and we shared lunch together. Of course this isn’t the first time she has been to my humble abode, but it’s the first time I have notice how much more interested in feeding herself she has become! Needless to say there was more food on the surrounding areas than in her little tummy. The simple plastic spoon became a weapon that any archer would have more than proud of. And her plastering skills were second to none!

Of course these new skills came with a sense of humour on her part. Each time she accomplished getting the food to where she wanted it to go, there was a huge smile on her face. This didn’t entail the food going in her mouth – oh no – more of it was on the wall and the floor!

So these are my suggestions to start with, I’m sure there are lots of parents out there with other ideas, something more seasonal, or families who eat different food ranges. Chinese – sweet and sour chicken perhaps. Indian – chicken or Paneer tikka, Dhal. The range could be endless.

Omelette – today’s colour of choice, a mild yellow with a few streaks of orange and yellow and green.

Lunch and desert – a sort of rainbow colour really. Imagine the colours of a wrap filled with fish fingers, tomato sauce, and some cucumber and lettuce, followed by blueberries. The colours would be vibrant and fresh, like a salad.

Tuna and Pasta – a subtle light pink colour, with a cream sheen. Restful and calm. Unlike lunch times.

Soup de jour – well that is anyone’s imagination. Whatever paint you have left at the end of a run, green pea and ham, to a vibrant orange carrot and parsnip or a subtle yellow, with a hint of green and yellow for mixed veg. The choice could be yours.

Bolognaise – a bright red would be just right for this, perhaps with a little soupçon of brown just to give it more of an authenticity. Or it could be in the range like suede, and glitter, with a bit of a bumpy surface?

I hope this has given you food for thought – no pun intended. After a long hour of cleaning the walls, I have very little sense of humour left. If I can order a litre of Bolognaise for next week, she’s back with me soon, I can arrange my meals around my wall colour.

Yours sincerely,

Nanna Pat

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Families, Family, Food, Inspiration, Laughter, real life, Uncategorized, women

Love is shown in many ways

Don’t raise your eyes to the sky in frustration

To the one who’s love is unconditional & everlasting!

For love is shown in many ways –

A warm hand on an arm for support,

A kiss of acknowledgment when you come from a journey.

The offer of food or drink as sustenance and love,

Or the sharing of good fortune and hard work

To make your burden a little lighter.

 

For until I give my last breath

And ever onwards

I will share my love with you

Whatever form it takes.

So learn to say ‘thanks’

And take the love and nurture it how you want.

 

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Food, Inspiration, Motivation, real life, Uncategorized, Weight loss

I did it. I went back.

I did it, I took the plunge and went back to the slimming club I had found success with a few years ago.

I was a little embarrassed to start with, walking into a huge room on my own having to  admit to myself that I had been defeated by life, by chocolate and cake. But there were familiar faces, I realised its a way of life for some people, they come back week after week after week.

I listened to the introduction talk, all about how I needed to eat this, and count that and exercise, and drink water. And fill in a food diary.

And I will, because today I had a scare! My glucose blood test results came back higher than I had ever seen them before. Possibly even too high to pull myself back from a re test and drop below the threshold. I’m reeling from the shock.

And once I have got over the shock, I’ll keep telling you about my journey. perhaps I don’t need the fat/thin pictures as motivation – I just needed this slap in the face from a test result.

 

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Food, Inspiration, Motivation, real life, Uncategorized, Weight loss, women

Motivation

How do you motivate yourself? By thinking about the positive or the negative?

I need to loose weight. Sorry what I should say is I have to loose weight. I know the science behind it, I know what I have to do..I lost enough a few years ago to feel very satisfied with myself.

I want something to motivate me. What do you think works best? Putting a picture on the fridge of the overweight me..as a reminder of what I don’t want to stay as. Or a picture of the slimmer healthier me, as a goal to work towards again?

I’d love to hear what you think.

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Food, Inspiration, Laughter, real life

Life is too short to make preserved lemons

I saw the finished results on someones social media time line, a beautiful tagine with chicken and couscous and preserved lemons. My friend said how nice the flavour was, and how easy it was to make.

I thought – I could do that! But I didn’t have any preserved lemons. So like a fool I asked for the recipe. Being a tad over enthusiastic I read the first bit, went out and bought one of those little jars with the clip on the top, and the lemons and rock salt. How many of us keep all those things in our store cupboard, not me, that’s for sure? I read the recipe again ……. AAAAAH! Once made you have to leave them for 3 months, and keep turning the jar over and over again so the salt is dissolved….

I wanted the lemons then, not in 3 months time. I don’t know what I thought I had let myself in for, something less time consuming than THAT that’s for sure. 3 months relentlessly going to the dark cupboard, turning the lemons, cooing over them, putting them back. Going to the cupboard, turning them over…..you get the picture? And what if I forget to do it? Would I get a thumping headache like the time I forgot my blood pressure tablets for 2 days? Or would the finished product be less than preserved, and the tagine be less than flavorsome.

How do I know! I’m only into day 2 and I’ve forgotten to turn them already……

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