“We’ll just split it, thanks.”
Those were the words that came out of my friend's mouth when the waiter brought us our bill. A bill that she didn’t even blink at. A bill that I had to crane my neck to catch the number without looking like I wanted to read it. $448.56. That exact number has been ingrained in my mind for three years.
As we walked out to pay at the front, I was watching my friend as if she was in the middle of a performance. I couldn’t believe she was about to pay for a bill without even knowing the cost of the meal.
Sure enough, when the waiter handed her the EFTPOS machine, she asked him to add a 15 per cent tip and tapped her card without even realising she was paying $257.88 (I had to use not one but TWO calculators to figure that out because I’ve never dealt with this much money before… And I also failed general maths).
Still engrossed in our conversation, I had to check my finances while she continued talking.
Okay, I had $300 left in my spending account so I should be all good. As I tapped my card, I didn’t hear that beautiful beep that ensured your wealth. I looked at the waiter. He looked confused. My friend stopped talking. “Oh,” he said. “You need to select if you want to tip or not.”
Now that everyone was looking at me, I sheepishly selected the 5 per cent, tapped again and the beautiful beep applauded me.
Just as we were about to walk out the door, the waiter called after us. “Miss!”