Even though I am retired, I still have a weekly routine, like grocery shopping on Mondays at Alcampo. Wednesdays I usually go to El Rodizio Grill for lunch, and yesterday was no exception. The restauarnt is a Brazilian-style buffet with emphasis on barbecued meats. I probably have eaten there over 100 times so I at least have a nodding acquaintance with most of the staff.
When I entered the restaurant, the two “seaters” were waiting at the end of the bar. I greeted them with ¡Buenos días caballeros! One of them said to me to sit where I wanted. Usually they take me to a table and take my drink order. Since that didn’t happen, I waited for the wait staff to approach me. Instead, in a few seconds I saw one of them coming with my bottle of cold mineral water, what I normally order.
After I finished my first plate and bowl of gazpacho, I picked up another plate and headed to the meat station. The usual meat cutter, a hunky brasileño that I like flirting with, was there and we chatted as usual. I had tell him to stop carving the roast beef as he was cutting faster than I was chatting. He knows how I like my beef, almost raw, and he had found some that had just the right “doneness” for me. I also elected for some of the lomo ibérico (think roast pork).
Seconds after I cleaned my meat plate, the same person who served me my water, picked up the plate and cutlery and said, ¿Helado de… ? And I responded with chocolate.
A few minutes I got up and paid my bill and said to the person at the cash register ¡Hasta la próxima!
In general I feel almost like family there. The staff knows me and we treat each other with respect. It was interesting that during April the meat cutter was on vacation in Brasil and there were substitute cutters. At the end of the month the substitute cutter told me that “Manuel” would be back the next week, and he was!