The Sweet Service Award goes to Desmond Spangenberg, the Food & Beverage Manager at Allee Bleue outside Franschhoek. This is the fourth Sweet Service Award Desmond has received. My colleagues and I stopped for a coffee just after 5 pm on a grey May day, to find that the restaurant had just closed due to there being no clients (closing time is usually 5.30 pm). Desmond was the only staff member still at the Allee Bleue Bistro, and told us that the kitchen was already closed, but he immediately offered to make us tea or coffee, even a cappuccino, which he knows I love. As we were inconvenienced, he insisted on not taking payment.
The Sour Service Award goes to Nedbank Sea Point, where I went to exchange my old R 200 notes for new ones two weeks ago. The teller did not confirm to me verbally how much I had given her, after counting my R 3 000 in notes. We were talking about the regulations while she was counting, and she showed me an old and a new note during this process. She also did not count my notes on the machine. She returned R2 800 in new notes to me. She admitted that she had not stated how much I had given her, and searched on her side for the missing note and asked me to do the same. I insisted on receiving my missing R200, and asked for the manager – being a Saturday she had the weekend off, so her deputy came to talk to me. She said that they would have to check the camera, but I was shocked that I was not allowed to check it with them, as it is in a private section of the bank, into which clients are not allowed! Only when I called the Sea Point police from the banking hall did they return my R200 to me. A visit that should have taken 10 minutes became a 40 minute drama, without apology from the bank. The manager Marie had promised to call when she was back in the office on the Monday, but I am still waiting for her call.
The WhaleTales Sweet & Sour Service Awards are presented every Friday on the WhaleTales blog. Nominations for the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be sent to Chris von Ulmenstein at email@example.com. Past winners of the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be read on the Friday posts of this blog, and in the WhaleTales newsletters on the www.whalecottage.com website.