Posts Tagged ‘arrogant’

Poor Me.

Friday, July 29th, 2011

Ok, that’s it. I’m having a whinge. It has been one of those days where I’m fairly certain an evil little man with a remote control and a general mean streak is sitting up in the sky and causing things to happen to me JUST TO BE ANNOYING. He is definitely French and he is most certainly short. I don’t like him. In fact, I hope his arms fall off because this is just ridiculous. Ok, here are the rubbish things that happened to me today:

  1. Whilst making coffee this morning, the plunger decided it was a volcano and spurted hot coffee all over my perfectly clean jeans.
  2. I had to take a tour today at 1pm so I left home at 12.15pm which gives me enough time to find a Velib (which can be tricky sometimes) and ride down to Place Saint Michel. I left the house and found there were no Velibs in the stations near me so I started to walk towards Place Saint Michel. On the way, I found a Velib station, took a bike and all was fine and dandy until BANG! I must have ridden over something sharp and my back tyre blew. So I then had to find a station to put the bike into so I could take another one which should have been easy except the closest station I found had one spot where I could have put the bike back except it was broken. So I then had to walk down the street, pushing the bike in search for another. It took me 10 minutes to find a station that wasn’t full where I could leave the bike. I then had to keep walking to another station as you have to wait five minutes in between taking bikes. By this time, I was late for work. I finally found another bike and rode like the wind (hitting every possible red traffic light) and made it just in time to be told that today was the day they were reporting back to the ‘Big Boss’ as to what time staff were arriving. Excellent.
  3. It rained for about 15 minutes of my tour – at one point quite significantly.
  4. I had an arrogant, know-it-all, likes to butt in, Frenchman on my tour who didn’t give me ANYTHING at the end. He brought with him his two know-it-all sons who proceeded to tell me the CORRECT history of France and how many things I had said wrong (this was probably a good thing though… I considered stealing his brain. Although I did wonder why on earth an 8 year old boy knows the names of every single King of France. He must get teased at school.)
  5. I had another arrogant Irishman on the tour who also didn’t tip me.
  6. My group was full of poor backpackers who are living on 4 Euros a day and therefore are disinclined to give any of it to me for taking them on a 4-hour walk.
  7. During the break in the middle of the tour, I bought myself a nutella crêpe because usually they make everything better. This crêpe was made by a 14 year old boy who had clearly never done it before and who proceeded to completely and utterly stuff it up. It was awful and I had to throw most of it in the bin because it wasn’t worth the calories.
  8. At the end of the tour I took a group to a ‘local French restaurant’ where they could have ‘real French food’ at ‘great prices’ and I proceeded to make measly centimes (that’s French for cents) for each person I brought.
  9. Someone gave me a Russian coin as part of my tip.
  10. I had to come home and cook dinner and then stupidly left the stove top on (I never do this.) Thankfully no fires resulted so clearly the little man has had enough.
  11. I discovered that an apartment that I have been trying to book for when Tom and I go to New York and that up until now has appeared to be available and the guy renting the apartment kept telling me was available, is, in fact, UNAVAILABLE. And now the internet is working at a snail’s pace and I am having to try and find somewhere else for us to stay.
So, as you can see, I’m having a bit of a whinge because I did also spend the day walking around Paris seeing the Louvre, the Seine, Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower, the Grand Palais etc, and then I did come home to find that Tom had mopped the floor, defrosted the freezer AND bought ice cream for dessert. The ice cream did fix most things. Except for the internet. That’s still a pain.

And the Arrogant Frenchman Award Goes to…

Sunday, May 22nd, 2011

… the over confident waiter who destroyed a perfectly nice evening at Hotel du Nord last night! Congratulations!



It was Harald and Heather’s (Tom’s parents) last night in Paris and they treated us to dinner at Hotel du Nord. Previous visits to this restaurant had proven positive and I spent the day looking forward to my meal. The first disappointment was the discovery that they have recently changed their menu so everything I had been planning on eating was no longer available. However, it is always good to try something new so I got over this quickly enough.

We were served by a friendly and efficient girl who took our orders and we waited with anticipation for our meals to arrive. My dinner arrived first, delivered by a guy who has been at the restaurant every time we’ve been there and who has a generally grumpy disposition. As he handed me my plate, he said something to me in French which I didn’t quite get the first time so I asked him to repeat himself. And so he said exactly the same thing again, which I understood to be, “There aren’t any other dishes ready.” to which I looked surprised and said “Ok.” and he walked away.

And so I waited for a few minutes for everyone else’s food to arrive but it didn’t and so I started eating to avoid my food getting cold. And I ate. And ate. I had about a fifth of my food left on my plate when the original waitress looked at our table and noticed that I was the only one with food. She frowned, we said, “Where’s the rest of the food?” and she went off to the kitchen to look for it. She returned to apologise and say that it was on its way (so it hadn’t been cooked yet), and I finished my meal. And then he appeared. Monsieur Grumpy came over to the table with a disapproving look on his face and said to me (in French), “Do you speak French?” to which I responded with “Oui.” He then proceeded to tell me that when he had brought me my meal he had asked me whether the dish had been ordered “separatement” (separately) and therefore it was my fault that no one else had their meal. This was said in a very accusatory tone and I sat dumbfounded as I was told that it was my fault that their communication systems between waiters and kitchen had clearly broken down. Of course, less than perfect French speaking skills failed me and I sat saying “Errr…” and shaking my head as he screwed up his nose at me and sauntered off.

I don’t think I have ever been so blatantly blamed for something that was out of my control in such a public venue before. It took me by surprise and my frustration and being unable to explain myself resulted in me getting over emotional and then came the tears. This, of course, led to outrage from Tom who then called the guy over and started pointing at the whimpering girl and trying his best to tell the guy off in French and English. The waiter just shrugged and made fun of Tom’s attempted at French and walked off again. Harald made the the final call saying “Ein arsch” potentially slightly too loudly. Anyway, the NICE waitress tried her best to calm the situation and gave us free dessert (hooray!) but the waiter seriously needed to be taught a lesson in what-not-to-do-to-your-clients. He could have just given me a dirty look and mumbled under his breath how annoying foreigners are, but he didn’t need to come and tell me it was my fault when 1. it wasn’t and 2. he never asked me if the dish had been ordered separately. One thing about listening to second languages is that you listen very careful to each word that is said in the sentence and he DID NOT say ‘separately’.

Anyway, Tom came home and wrote scathing comments about the waiter on La Fourchette. We all agreed that the food was great and the waitress who actually served us was lovely so other than the ‘arse’ we had a good time. Just a pity about arrogant waiters, I guess.