Whenever my husband and I decide to dine out with our children I find myself pondering why. Why do we put ourselves through it? The question generally arises somewhere between shutting the car door and before the first glass of wine. Sometimes the wine helps. Sometimes it doesn’t.
Sunday night we were invited to a family dinner at ‘the club’. For the uninitiated, dotted around Melbourne are a myriad of clubs that cater to the diverse ethnic communities that live here. The particular club we attended was an old-school Italian, dark brown brick variety. Think 70’s floral print tiles in the bathroom, two-piece band and a dance-floor littered with leopard print.
As far as child-friendly venues go you can’t really beat somewhere with wide open spaces and a culture that embraces challenging toddlers but somewhere between reigning in a three year old souped-up on soft drink and hunting down bread for a hungry baby I started to lose my marbles.
The music was so loud. And relentless. What happened to breaking for meals? I realise I sound about 72 right now but there are few things more grating than a piano accordion being mimicked on a keyboard that’s been turned up to eleven. A thousand buskers from the Piazza Navona had invaded my brain and it already felt like the night was resembling a carnival side-show, I didn’t need the music to go with it.
By this stage my husband and I were making gestures of self harm with the cutlery. I couldn’t get that wine down quick enough. The baby was happy however I’m starting to wonder what effect all the bread had on her because we’ve been dealing with a 40 degree temperature ever since (I’m on my second round of imodium but we won’t go there). I’ve been on doctor google and I think she has the dreaded ciabatta virus.
Last night my husband threw his hands in the air and said “what the hell did the club do to this family?” What indeed and that my friends is why we never dine out.
How do you cope dining with children? If you have those children that sit and draw quietly please move along, nothing to see here.