Really this should be titled “attempting to eat in a restaurant with two small kids” because it involves an enormous amount of effort in exchange for very little food. It is not unusual for us to leave a restaurant still feeling hungry after abandoning our meal half way through due to an epic toddler tantrum. Or even worse, leaving with chronic indigestion from wolfing down dinner in order to keep the peace. Tonight was no exception and the worst part was that I didn’t get to finish my ginormous glass of wine, which ironically I only ordered in order to survive dinner in the first place!
We normally avoid eating out with the boys, we know our limitations when it comes to these situations. But being on holiday and looking forward to all the delicious food, we naively forgot all our previous experiences and thought – it will be fine, the boys can watch the Ipad whilst we eat and drink merrily in peace for an hour or two…
This was the first flaw in my thinking: timing! Seriously, who thinks they can have a 3 course meal in peace with two toddlers?! Literally as soon as our starters are placed down in front of us the littlest one starts to kick off. It’s like he knows, if Harry has a super power then this is it! And once he kicks off, absolutely nothing will settle him. Quickly realising that his brother isn’t happy, Max starts to feel left out and ditches the Ipad in favour of – “a kiss, a cuddle, up, down, pram”…any delaying tactic to stop us from eating!
At this point bribes of the iPad, chocolate cake, chips, my sanity(!) don’t work. Sam starts to shovel his food in whilst I start to glug back the wine! As the crying, moaning and misbehaving continues I start to feel sick and no longer fancy tucking in to my beef shin. Everything is tasteless and the scene is starting to cause other diners to stare. At this point I should mention that their children are sitting and eating perfectly, now yes they are a little older but they genuinely look like they are having a lovely time.
Meanwhile back at our table Harry is screaming the place down and Max is half crying/half falling asleep in his pudding. We are now at the stage where we need to admit defeat and retreat to our room. Sighing I leave my beloved wine, grab Harry and pretty much leg it from the restaurant. Leaving poor Sam to settle up and rescue a very tired and fed up Max.
Our whole 3 course meal took less than half an hour from start to finish. So much for our leisurely meal in a lovely 4 star hotel – instead we are sitting in a dark hotel room with two snoring children whilst I write this.
Needless to say we won’t be eating out again anytime soon and my expectations have been significantly lowered – MacDonalds here we come (for the next 5 years!)!!!!!