Some would say that Ponavenitula Tavite Taumoepeau was a little unethical. When dining at a restaurant it was always the same: “Would you mind ever so terribly if I started with dessert?”
“Of course not, sir,” came the inevitable reply from slightly bemused waiters. It was not unusual for guests to order only dessert. Perhaps they had eaten earlier and been to the theatre or a movie. But to have dessert before the rest of the meal was a little different.
After dessert, Ponavenitula would order the rest of the meal and while the chef prepared the dishes, Ponavenitula would walk out. Disappear. The city had hundreds of restaurants. It was going to take Ponavenitula ages to get through them all.
He worked a fairly stringent system. Wednesday was when his wife went to her bridge evening. She was away for hours. Ponavenitula would make himself some soup-in-a-cup and toast, hop in the car, and head to the next restaurant on his list for dessert. It was an excellent scheme, and such a saving!
Thus far, Ponavenitula must have devoured a free dessert in maybe forty restaurants. You would think he would get caught at least once.
And then the inevitable happened.