I am writing you to express my extreme dissatisfaction with an experience I recently had at the local Chi-Chi's in Charlottesville.  I am normally a patient and accepting person, but my experience at Chi-Chi's tested every conceivable limit, and made me resort to writing a letter  - something I have never done before.

 

   We arrived and were seated promptly.  This was the high point of the evening.  Our waitress took her time in presenting us with menus and water, and we were dismayed by her slovenly appearance and rude manners.  She curtly answered our questions and took our orders, only to return in five minutes stating that she had "misplaced" her order taking pad, and would need to take our order again.  I truly cannot recall whether or not she wrote our order down the first time, but because of the girl's behavior and appearance, I believe that her memory loss may have been due to some sort of substance abuse problem.

 

   Our food took its time in arriving, and our waitress was nowhere to be found, so I got up from the table to try and find someone who could inform me when it might be ready.  I asked the hostess if she knew where our waitress was, and she informed me, dismissively, that she was on her cigarrette break.  This is unacceptable.  I attempted to ask another waiter if he could find information about our food, but he ignored me and began to walk away into the kitchen.  I followed him, determined to obtain some sort of answer as to the status of my dinner.  As I entered the kitchen, I saw a reason why my food may not be ready:  The cooks were standing arond talking to each other, using language that can only be described as some of the most vulgar speech I have ever heard in my life.  One of them, in the span of a few seconds, managed to make a lewd gesture where he grabbed his crotch emphatically, several times.  Yes, he grabbed his crotch - with the same hand that he was supposedly using to prepare my food.  I was disgusted, and went to tell my family that we would not be eating here.

 

   Unfortunately, our waitress had brought our food to the table while I was away.  I wanted to leave right away, but my family was embarassed and worried that I was making a "scene" (which was entirely justified,) and I sat down begrudgingly to eat dinner. 

 

   During dinner, our waitress, who was remarkably unattentive, sat at the bar chatting with other waitresses and drinking alcohol.  Her speech was audible at times, and I distinctly heard her refer to my family and I as ugly and "lame," accompanied by glances in my direction. 

 

   Hopefully you have not stopped reading, for the experience gets worse.  Eventually, the same cook who made the obscene gesture in the kitchen joined our waitress at the bar.  They continued to talk loudly, and I grew worried that if we did not leave soon, an incident might occur.  Just as I thought this, I felt something wet and sticky striked the back of my neck.  I turned around to see the waiter wink at me, and then dart back into the kitchen.  I am not positive, but I am fairly sure that what struck me was human excrement.

 

   This was the last straw.  My family and I hurridly gathered our things and left the restaurant, leaving ample compensation for our meal on the table, (I'm never one to walk out on a bill.)  Unfortunately, in the parking lot, I found that the dumpster that we parked our car next to had somehow over flowed a bag of garbage onto the roof of my car.  I was forced to remove a disgusting array of smelly garbage from my roof before we made our escape from the parking lot.  As I drove away, I saw our waitress outside on yet another cigarrette break, and she gave me a much more famous and rude gesture as we drove away, (flipping the bird.)

 

   I don't honestly know what I have done to deserve such treatment at Chi-Chi's.  I've tried to live my life in a manner that encourages tolerance and forgiveness, but this crosses every line.  I've not had these sort of problems at other Chi-Chi's, and may at some point in time return to Chi-Chi's, but likely this will not happen.  I have also considered contacting the Better Business Bureau, a step which I consider to be extreme and rather vindictive, but I have been pushed too far.  I look forward to your prompt response and dealings with this problem.  I feel I have earned it.

 

-Greg Harrell-Edge

910 Rugby Rd.

Charlottesville, VA 22903