Do you often spend money on things you really can’t afford or are you more frugal than not? What would you do if you sat down in a restaurant and suddenly noticed all the items on the menu were way out of your normal price range for dining out? Would you stay anyway, put the bill on a credit card, and worry about paying it off later, or would you get up and leave, and opt to eat somewhere far more reasonable?
I ask these questions solely because I faced this very dilemma recently when my partner and I, and another couple, opted to dine at a newly opened restaurant here in Toledo, Ohio just over a week ago now. The place was called The Chop House, which I for one was rather excited to dine at the establishment given how much I like trying new things in life. Unfortunately, that feeling parted pretty quickly as soon as I began taking a look at the menu once there.
The cost of a cup of French Onion soup…$8.95.
The cost of a small Caesar salad…$11.95.
The cost of the cheapest main course, a piece of Salmon with no accompaniments…$32.95
The cost of a Baked Potato to go with that piece of Salmon…$8.95.
Total Cost for me without drinks or taxes or tip…$62.80.
No friggin’ way!!!
I began squirming in my seat over the costs of food there, but decided I didn’t really want to be high maintenance, so I was just going to order a salad that I saw on the Happy Hour part of the menu, choosing to eat some leftovers at home later. Except when the waitress told me that she’d have to charge me a higher price for that salad if I got it as my main course, I was immediately ready to leave.
In the past, when I had my own business, plenty of income, and a well of savings, I was known to spend upwards of $100 for meals at times just for myself. In fact, I used to look for extravagant places to dine at, solely to appease my ego’s ability of having plenty of money in life to blow on ridiculously pricey meals, and then would brag about it to others later.
But that’s definitely not where my Spirit is at these days, especially in light of not having a paying job at present, which is precisely why I spoke up at the table and asked if everyone else was thinking what I was thinking, and ironically, they were. None of us felt comfortable with the cost of food there, so 20 minutes after sitting down, we were all leaving and heading to a far more affordable restaurant.
In the end, while I did feel rather embarrassed leaving the restaurant without ordering and explaining to the waitress why, I was still thankful we left and that I had listened to my Spirit’s inner nudging’s for once. Because each of us enjoyed a very satisfying and more cost-conscious meal, but even more importantly, I could see how money and my ego were no longer the ones calling the shots in life and that alone made me feel a whole lot better about the decision I made during The Chop House Dilemma.
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson