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8:09am on Tuesday, 2nd August, 2016:

Table for...


I'm at Stansted airport at the moment, awaiting my flight to Dundee for the DiGRA/FDG conference.

I had breakfast at one of the restaurants (as they like to call them) surrounding the open space at the end of the serpentine walk through shops you have to do here. I was sat near the entrance, so saw the various individuals and groups of people coming to get something to eat. Table for 2, table for 1, table for 1, table for 5, ...

Hmm, table for 5: I've always suspected that this would be harder to get than a table for 4, but as I've only ever been in families with two children I don't have much experience of it. They got a table right away, though. More tables for 2, 1, 3, then a table for 6.

OK, well they didn't have much trouble with that, either. The table for 7 was a bit of a problem, and wound up being two tables for 4 with a spare. They could cope, though.

The table for 9, however, was too much. The (large) family seemed to think it was easy to collect tables for 2 and 4 and put them all together to make a table for 9, but of course it wasn't. They were rather affronted by this, which I suspect much be their natural condition in restaurants as I don't suppose there are many where you can turn up unannounced and ask for a table for 9 at a busy time without spreading panic. One of the waitressess asked if she could take a chair from my table for 2 (making it a table for 1) to try and squash in an extra seat round two hastily-moved tables for 4.

I wonder how often they get a family of 9 travelling together on holiday all wanting breakfast.

I also wonder how they dealt with the "table for 12" who arrived just as I was leaving...

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Copyright © 2016 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).