Our weekend festivities turned out well, and though we experienced the icy blast of winter weather that blanketed the North American continent, we stayed warm.
We began our weekend by dining out on Friday at one of our favorite Italian restaurants. It was crowded, yet we were able to secure a table in a good spot. Though it wasn’t the usual private booth we prefer, the table was nevertheless in a cozy setting.
We started with a glass of Peroni – an Italian beer favored by Best Friend – and a glass of pinot noir – my go-to wine at this Italian restaurant.
As I glanced around the dining room, it was good to see that the restaurant was as busy as it was, for it told me that the restaurant is managing to stay viable, and that people are still enjoying themselves, making the best of whatever their situations are.
My attention returned to our menu, which we perused, and then ordered. Our waiter, Gerardo, brought a bowl of pasta e fagioli soup and a cup of Italian wedding soup to our table. We immediately noticed that the amount of soup in the bowl was more like a cup’s worth, and the cup of soup was only halfway filled.
So much for keeping costs down, but it’s understandable.
Our meals arrived just as we conversed about our observations of the other patrons – Gerardo was attentive, and he did a swell job keeping up with everyone despite the crowd. Best Friend enjoyed his beef ravioli, and I enjoyed my chicken picatta with the ginormous capers (they were the size of Queen olives), though I could have done without the slick lemony-oily spaghetti.
Yet, our conversation is something I wish to touch upon in this essay. It was somewhat difficult to carry on a low-volume conversation at our tale. The patrons who sat in the booth behind us spoke so loudly that I, for one, felt I was sitting with them, rather than with Best Friend. At one point, I said to Best Friend, “I’ll be back in a few minutes. It seems I am sitting at the booth being forced to listen to their conversations.” And with great aplomb, Best Friend smiled and understood.
I trust that when people are dining in a restaurant, many do not know their voices easily carry to the other tables and booths. Occasionally, it is the design of the room’s acoustics that help to project loud talkers’ voices to all corners. Sometimes it is just the unaware loudness of people’s voices; they are used to yelling everywhere. No matter the reason, being forced to hear strangers’ conversations is discourteous.
With that in mind, Best Friend and I find it easy to modulate our voices to a low volume, and we still understand one another without shouting across the table. Sometimes, the yelling from other tables is so distracting that we don’t talk with each other during our meal. Instead, we wait until we are out of the restaurant to continue our conversation.
It is most considerate to keep your conversations to your own table and nix the booming “look at me” volume so prevalent these days. No one really wants to hear your political leanings or vulgar language or how perfect your children and grandchildren are.
This is a season in which to sparkle and revel in your own considerate style.
Make your holiday season festive.
Lady Susan Marie Molloy
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