I was really just going to let it drop. I should have, but after reading everyone’s advice and figuring there was a tactful way to do this that might spare others in the future a similar problem, I decided to bring it up. I went back to my favorite cafe and waiter and mentioned to him in a very polite manner that I thought there had been a small error in the previous credit card charge. He took my receipt and told me they would look into it. Immediately I was happy I had brought it up, b/c from the look on my waiter’s face it was obvious he had nothing to do with it, so I could continue in my warm assessment of him. A few minutes later the manager came over and apologized for any error and said they would look into it when the accountant got in. He then offered me free coffee and some pastry. I was perfectly happy in that it hadn’t turned into a big deal, and all was well.
But then my contentment was shattered about 30 minutes later when the accountant got in and approached me in a huff with the last CC charge, showing me that it HAD only been charged for 19, not the 21 I had claimed. I checked my bank website and there was the charge for 21, not the 19 he had claimed. I asked him if it was difficult to pull all of the charges I had ever made there (I assumed there were 2 or 3), and he told me no problem and scurried off to his office. When he came back, he showed me 3 charges, two totaling 19 dollars and one totaling 21. Apparently there is a significant delay between when they post and it gets to my bank account listing. These WERE my charges, and I had egg on my face. I apologized to the accountant, who was at this point giving me a self satisfied look, followed by an “OK then. hummff.” Mortified, I then apologized to my waiter, paid my bill and skulked away, totally embarrassed, thinking that now I could REALLY never go back to this place.
As an unbelievable (and further embarrassing) postscript, my waiter somehow found his way to this blog and posted his own comment on that post, which you can read here. And upon checking my bank account online this morning, that damn charge is now showing up! Next time, I will definitely be keeping my mouth shut. Mea culpa, mea culpa.