So, on this particular day, not only was I in a bad mood, I had the single worst dining experience in the history of my life.
Turbo decided that we should go out to eat at Chili’s. We sat in silence for most of the time because of a slight squabble that was going on.
Noticeably, during the daytime, the Chili’s looked like an old barn someone had purchased and only halfway renovated in efforts to make it appear vaguely like a restaurant. Had a cow come around the corner at any point, my surprise would’ve been far less than one might expect.
We arrived around lunch time, and luckily, the place wasn’t ridiculously crowded. However, that’s where the good part of this story ends.
First, the host sat us next to a table that had at least 10 children. We sat in a teeny, tiny booth that wasn’t fit even for two of the seven dwarves. Also, if a person of a large size than, say, maybe 200 pounds had been sitting there, their ample frame would’ve been right in the middle of the aisle.
The children weren’t the worst part; the fact that they and their family were collectively the loudest people that have ever dined outside of the home made the experience worse.
Our server, whose name I can’t remember (luckily for him), took thousands of years to get our order and finally bring us our food. We may have been there for an hour, we may have been there for months, I don’t actually know.
Under the vast majority of circumstances, I’m the single most benign human being when it comes to servers and the stress under which they find themselves; I understand they’re waiting on multiple tables, trying to please multiple people, working as the messengers between a steamy room full of angry cooks and a noisy room full of grouchy patrons cursed with low blood sugar.
However, this guy looked cracked out.
As usual, I ordered an appetizer: the pretzel bites with honey mustard dipping sauce. I think some other kind of sauce came with it.
And my bad luck had yet to run out: my food had been placed right in front of me and Turbo for a few seconds when a man and his child walked by, and what did that child do?
He sneezed, profusely and generously, all over my food.
Out of the thousands, millions, infinite number of places in the entire universe and even here on humble planet Earth, the one place the the three-year-old had to sneeze was on my damned food.
The man apologized, but apologies mean nothing in the face of food that has been seasoned with the mucus of a snotty three-year-old.
At that moment, if I could have rounded up all the children in the world and dropped them off at a Gingerbread House complete with a witch in the middle of a forest, I would’ve done so with little hesitation.
The word of advice: do not go to Chili’s in Panama City. The food is awful, the servers are awful, the atmosphere is awful, and I’m giving them absolutely no stars. If I never eat at that restaurant again, it will be too soon.