Sometimes I just wonder how some places stay in business.

For the most part, my interactions with local businesses are good. I shop locally as much as I can. We eat out a few times a month, and we order restaurant delivery at least once a week.

99% of those interactions are great. If there's ever a problem, most businesses will step up and work to help resolve the problem.

Most business. Most restaurants.  Until the other night.

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Looking back I can't believe what happened and I literally shake my head to think the restaurant's management reacted as they did. The bottom line: they lost me as a customer.

Now if you're waiting for me to reveal the name of the restaurant, I'm not going to do that. I have no vendetta against them - I just didn't like the way I was treated. I will not reveal the restaurant because maybe my experience was just a "one-off" thing. Let's hope.

Let's start at the beginning. We decided to order food delivery from a "new place." Not new - just new to us.

We used an APP to order and arrange for delivery. (Hey, it's 2022, we don't call and talk to human beings anymore - we just text what we need.)

So we placed our order and waited, and waited.  We had been given a "delivery window", but now we were coming to the end of the window, with no food in sight.

Just as I noticed the window had passed, I got a text from my next-door neighbor. She asked me if we waiting on a food delivery because someone just left a bag of food on their front porch and promptly jumped in their car and drove away before they even opened the door.

Strike one.

So I walked over to their house and picked up my food. (It's nice having nice neighbors!)

When I got the food to our kitchen, I noticed one of the three items we had ordered was not in the bag.

Strike two.

Between the wrong-house delivery and the missing food item, I just felt like I had to do something.

I reached out to the APP delivery service since that's who I arranged the order with in the first place.

They responded to my inquiry immediately and said they'd be back in touch - they would check with the restaurant. (I actually was impressed that I reached a person and that that person responded to my concerns so quickly.)

I should have just quit right there.

The App person said they checked with the restaurant and that they would "speak to their driver" about the situation. (I learned the driver was contracted thru the restaurant itself and not thru the APP delivery service.) OK, fine. I'm OK with that. They were being responsive to one of my concerns.

This next part is where it all started to unravel very badly.

The restaurant said that the "missing item" was in fact in the bag and I should check again.

Strike three.

I should check again? I only ordered three items and there were only two items in the bag. There was no third item.

The APP customer service person checked with the restaurant again. And again, the response was "it was in the bag."

Well, now I feel like I'm being called a liar.

After lots of back and forth, the customer service rep, on behalf of the restaurant, said "there was nothing that could be done because they were confident the item was in the bag."

I reminded them that the bag wasn't even delivered to my house!

(Now, I started to wonder if they were implying that maybe my neighbor had the missing item. I'm sorry, I would never go back and ask my neighbor that question. That's ridiculous. Besides, it's the restaurant delivery person's fault that they delivered it to the wrong house, right?)

At this point, my irritation level is this high. I've had it. I'm ready to just move on. I'm just going to forget it. Then, I get another message via the APP.

"Unfortunately, we are not able to issue a small discount on the order, since they said the item was in the bag at the time of delivery."

I never asked for a discount. I honestly just wanted something like, "We're so sorry, we're not sure what happened..." That's it, just a "We're sorry."

Then I reread the text, "The item was in the bad at the time of delivery."

"You mean when it was miss-delivered? Because it was never delivered to me."

I think this is where I snapped.

I then proceeded down another road. "If you can't refund me for the item I never got, can you refund me on the driver's tip because THE DRIVER NEVER DELIVERED THE FOOD TO ME!"

Again, negative. No.

And that's how this local restaurant lost my business.

It's a shame, too, because the food we did get was pretty good. Actually, it was excellent. Instead of this story, I could have easily written a glowing recommendation. The food was great. It was the customer service that sucked.

Oh, by the way. The missing item? Literally a small bag of potato chips. They lost a customer over a bag of chips because they couldn't say, "We're sorry." Plus, they pretty much called me a liar.

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