Before I moved back to Hong Kong, I had always thought things would be much easier here. I mean, coming from the Netherlands where the three most spoken words (in English) must’ve been “That’s not possible“, I had just expected HK to be a place where rules, no matter what, could always be bended.
Fast forward to today. Me and my colleagues are having lunch at a modern Shanghainese restaurant in Wanchai. Our party of five is not yet complete, but we want to order the Set Lunch for 5 consisting of 5 appies and 5 mains. We ask the lady if we can order 2 appies to start with while we wait for the rest of our crew, but she puts on a pained expression and says, “Oh, so, so sorry, our system can’t handle that. Either you order everything at once, or you wait until the rest of your party arrives to place your complete order. There’s no way to just order two appetizers first…”
My colleague pumped up the nice factor and asked again if we could please stagger our orders, since we had no idea what our other colleagues wanted to eat, but the lady frowned once more and explained the system in pain-staking detail again.
I stared at her and thought…What do you mean you can’t? Since when did technology become such a big obstacle for simple everyday matters, especially for something as basic as placing an order in a restaurant? Why can’t you just physically get us what we want, take a mental note (or write it down somewhere non-digitally *GASP*) and then enter everything in your silly system after?
Boggled, we ended up making the whole order at once, but I just couldn’t get over her stupid, stubborn ways. I know we rely on technology a lot these days and it generally does help us work more efficiently, but technology can also cause many people to forget that they have something called a BRAIN.