Last night we had a impromptu family celebration at the local 'all you can eat' restaurant. This would not be the restaurant of choice for most of us, but the particular child that chose it loves the place. It was his birthday, so his choice.
There are several factors that determine the kind of experience you'll have at this restaurant...
Number one? Saturday night. Apparently the night that every family in the greater area that feels like eating chinese food without restraint goes out.
Number two? Saturday night is seafood night....multiply the amount of people by about ten, it's Australia and people here like seafood...a lot...
Number three? Early session. Every person who likes seafood and is very hungry with a dozen or so screaming children that should be in bed already.... they're there too, mostly throwing their food on the floor to trip up the people that are running towards the huge stacks of food...there's something about seeing a lot of food in one place that makes people a little crazy...
Number four? The two hour session. It makes people panic and panicked people aren't pretty. Once again...crazy people. These people are worried they might not get in their money's worth by the end of the session.
Number five? This is the most important factor of all. The ability to block out everything negative and have a good time with your family.
Watching the kids enjoyment makes it all worth while. Who cares if someone stepped on your foot or spilled sweet and sour pork down your favourite jeans, if you can't get on the line for the sushi train or an old lady and her grandson pushed in in front of the roast bar. You will survive. Here are a few tips to help if you ever find yourself fighting for survival at an all you can eat restaurant...
Use your patience while trying to get near the food. People are less likely to really harm you if you're nice to them.
Don't be fussy...grab what you can and take note of the stuff you want that you can't get to. You can always send the kids in later, they're little they can climb under the adults without being seen.
Don't jump the cue if the person behind you has picked up a fresh knife and fork. As previously stated hungry people are crazy.
Eat slowly and chew your food. You're going to need all of your strength to fight your way to the dessert bar. Even more to carry back your haul.
Let your kids serve themselves. They have a greater chance of survival on their own. Crazy people with a fear of starving are generally tolerant of children.
Last but not least...KEEP A SENSE OF HUMOUR.
IT was all worth while. If for no other reason it was amazing to see the birthday boy devour sushi and fruit on the same plate with a smile on his face. This was after he'd already been at the ice cream and the chocolate fountain. Nothing like a child's cast iron stomach.
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