The Waiter – A Shorty Short

“What do you recommend?”

“Our cotoletta alla petroniana is the best in this region, sir.”

“Okay, give me that and one lasagna.”

“And hurry up.”


“You can’t just leave sir,” Andy pleaded.

“Well, I can’t spend my time waiting for food that takes so long to prepare. “

“But sir, the food will be served shortly.”

“You didn’t tell me it takes that long to prepare this…whatever you call it,”
the man was sputtering in indignation.

“Sir, we can’t withdraw the orders, they’re cooked already.”


“You will have to pay for the food,” the head waiter scowled at him. “They were your customers.”

“Can’t I have it deducted next month?”

“It is already in-voiced; you’ll have to pay for the entire amount today.” The voice was stern, almost unfeeling.


“That’s the rule, take it or leave it!”


He had to borrow money to pay the $ 240.00 for the lasagna and cotoletta alla petroniana. He brought the food home and gave some to his vagrant friends and ate some himself. His back was aching like hell but he still got one more job to go to.

“Good evening sir, welcome to Giogatto’s,” he led the group to a nearby table.

“Honey, I don’t know what to eat, ” the woman crooned to the man.

“Let’s see the menu.”

He kept his peace. He learned a lesson well.

“What about this, two Pezzetti di cavallo and one Baccala alla vicentina.

“Wine, sir?”

“Yes, 2 Vino Nobile Montepulciano.”

“Would that be all sir?”

“Yes, for God’s sake, stop hovering over us! “


Andiyan na ang pasalubong!” (The packages have arrived!) Tina was shouting with so much joy in her tiny frame.

“Ang daming padala ni kuya Andy!” (Andy has sent us so many gifts)

“This is for you Tina,” a big, talking and walking doll.

“This one’s for you Joy.” It was the latest cell phone model.

“And these are for me and your papa.” Celia was excitedly displaying her new, dark blue coat.

Dozens of grocery and household items were closely packed in the remaining space of the balikbayan’s package. (packages coming from relatives abroad) And an airmail envelope was on the table top with a thick bundle of cash in it.

“Kuya Andy has made it big in Italy! ” Celia was brimming all over with motherly pride and joy. “He works as a nurse in one of the big hospitals.” She intoned to the neighbors who were watching curiously from the dilapidated windows.


Andy finally laid down his fatigued body on the hard mattress. He has to work three jobs in a day to be able to send money home. He did not want to disappoint his parents. They had spent so much in his nursing education that he wanted them to be comfortable now that he can work. There were immigration procedures that he had to accomplish first, though before he could work as a nurse.

He lied to them about his job. It was the first time he had lied. It would be embarrassing to let them know the truth. He turned and stared at the ceiling.

Come to think of it, what was embarrassing about working honestly for a living? He should be proud of it! He has to tell the truth to his family in his next letter: that in the three diners he was working for, he was “The Waiter”.

This has been published at

Photo by: gapysphoto

25 thoughts on “The Waiter – A Shorty Short”

  1. how true…

    many of our fellow Filipinos work overseas in a job that is far from what they have studied in school… and their family don’t even know it.

    Andy, as a matter of fact, is still lucky to land a decent job

    a very realistic story

  2. Hi thank you for dropping by bonoriau. Indonesian language not that difficult..we are also using Malay language which some of them quite similar to your language.

  3. Great story Jena. I got the feel for his troubled thoughts, felt the pain of losing so much money due to no fault of his. Poor Andy, working so hard to send money home, yet losing money because of some arrogant twit.

  4. Hi Jena,
    Yes, I’ve heard many Filipinos here don’t necessarily apply what they had finished in the Philippines. So sad but true. However, there are also many successful ones who landed jobs as doctors, Medical Technologists, and nurses throughout the U.S.

    I still send money home, but not as much as I used to when my mother was still alive. Bless her soul that she may rest in peace.

    The story is very realistic.


  5. Jena,
    Just wanted to tell you that I went to Helium to catch up on reading your many articles there. I didn’t comment there because the comment system there is so time consuming. I enjoyed reading everyone of them. Your articles are all excellently written. Very impressive.


  6. Dear jena, great story….The fight between expectation and real outcome. Yes we all encounter this, as long as we have family….Thank you for sharing and happy writing

  7. Hi Tasha,

    I’m happy that there are those who made it successfully, but I’m sure there are still many Andy’s out there, not only in Italy but most especially in the US and in so many countries in the world.

    If only corruption would be eradicated in our government, and money spend where it should be, many Filipinos would not have to go abroad to work. Money would be enough for everyone.

    Thanks for the generous comment. Take care.

  8. Hi David,

    Yes, I’m sure to go back visiting your blog. I like your style. I made a story once making use of that, and it was published in a local mag here. I will try to dig in my boxes and see if I can post it here.

    Thanks for the visit and best regards.

  9. Hi Eric,

    You know what I wish I could write? a story like tabitha and Tirashar. It takes great creativity to be able to do that. You have to create an whole, new world from your mind. You also have to create new terms, new creatures, and many more.

    I wrote once a sci-fi short story entitled “The Saucer” , it did not find its way to the local printing press, just like how the others it was too unrealistic perhaps, by their standards, quite impossible..that’s sci-fi , right? I wanted to introduce it..but well,,,, it went straight to the editor’s trash bin..he he he..

    I treasured that story, though. I don’t know where the manuscript is now, or I would have revived it…

    Thanks for the visit. See you with Tirashar next week.

  10. Hi Ray,

    I’m sure even in Germany, there are Filipinos too. My friend has a touching story about an immigrant to Germany who went through hard times before she was able to make it big. Now she’s a singing star there with am appreciable following.

    Thanks for the visit, Happy blog hopping and all the best.

  11. Hi Jen,
    A lot of traffic going on here… I just read “the waiter” interesting. The characters traits came out without further introduction. Hardworking. Resilient. Patient. Thoughtful. Caring. Respectful. hmm… I might miss out some of the other traits this guy has. Overall, I like it!


  12. Sorry for the typos folks, Eric Kindly substitute the “A” for the “AN” WHOLE WORLD…”

    These keypads are acting up…

    Wishing you all a happy Sunday !

  13. Hi Rosili,

    he he he, but it’s true, try it. Happy blog hopping.

    Hi jean,

    Thanks for those generous words. There are many Andys out there. Cheers and happy blog hopping.

  14. Reading this again, I really think that it subconsciously inspired me when I was writing the piece of flash fiction on my blog last week.

    It is interesting how good writing gets under your skin.

    Nice one!! 🙂

  15. Hi Ken,

    You’re a better writer, you have original ideas which everyone can adapt. Thanks for the visit and God bless.


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.