Now don't get me wrong. I'm sure Scranton itself is a lovely city.
But things didn't start out well.
Expedia never sent our reservations. And we have rooms, but not the ones we wanted. There are people sleeping on the floor and people sleeping with people they'd rather not sleep with even though they are related. You know how guys are...
Then there was dinner.
We try to stay away from chains when we travel. You learn more about an area if you hit the local spots.
That being said, we walked into this local Italian restaurant and could tell we were in trouble when we saw the welcoming look on our servers face. I can understand if we were being loud or demanding that we would have deserved the look of horror we received. But we had merely walked in. Now I kid around a lot on this blog but, no exaggeration, the woman moaned, "I can't handle this," and ran in the back.
But, ya know, maybe she'd had a bad day or last time she'd had a party of eight they stiffed her on the tip. We were willing to give her a chance. We're really great people to have in a restaurant. And we tip really well.
Five of us decided to share a Sicilian pizza, the other three to order separately. This seemed to annoy her and there are those among us who almost changed her order so the evil waitress wouldn't dislike her so, wuss that she is. But since that would not have made a difference anyway, we stuck to the insurrmountable confusion of one pizza and three dinners.
Things calmed down after that and we even drank whatever drink we got whether we ordered it or not in the interest of good will and not ticking off Broomhilda. We made do with the two sets of silverware we were given to share among the eight of us, Twin Progeny 1 even stirring his chocolate milk with a fork. We didn't even fuss when the three dinners arrived and were eaten by two of the recipients (The third being John Boy the Snakeman who requires a week to polish off any meal) before the pizza arrived. We chalked it up as the penance we must do for having complicated our order so.
Then our pizza arrived.
I've eaten five-for-a-buck generic pizza. I've eaten what my school system considers pizza. I've even eaten what they have the nerve to call pizza on french bread. Usually you can get that stuff down if you just consider it a food in and of itself and don't call it a pizza.
But that didn't work with what was served to us. The cheese was yellow. You couldn't even bite the crust, let alone eat it. After a few bites, all five of us gave up.
That was when we unleashed our secret weapon.
I must say Dark Garden through all of this was showing amazing restraint. He is not usually tolerant of rudenss or poor service. All during the meal he had been a rumbling volcano. With each roll of Broomhilda's eyes, there was under-the-breath murmurings. I wanted to warn her, let her know things were not as placid as them seemed. And had the pizza not arrived in the state it did, it would have remained that way until he'd had the satisfaction of not tipping her. But, dear God, don't mess with his food.
So, yes, I confess. We unleashed Dark Garden on her, ran out the door and never looked back. We are a cowardly people.
I got a salad at the Sheetz next to the hotel. Dark Garden ordered a pizza in his room for himself and the assorted little Cratchits. I'm sure the delivery guy is okay.
Maybe I ought to check...