6. Don?t sit me in the middle of the restaurant like I?m the main attraction in a freak show. Then again, don?t stick me in a corner either. What I?d like is a view of the goings-on without being the focal point.7. Do provide me with the same options you provide larger tables. Water top-ups, information about the day?s specials, that sort of thing.

8. Do suggest some scaled-down menu items like dishes that lend themselves to half portions.

9. Don?t assume that I want to eat and run. I may have come to your restaurant because of the ambience and the busy atmosphere, not just to satisfy my hunger.

10. Don?t assume that I want the house wine. I?m alone, not undiscerning.

11. Don?t rush me or ignore me.

12. Don?t be too overly friendly thinking that you have to compensate for my lack of a companion.

I?ve found that the best trick to use when dining alone at a restaurant is to take along a small note pad and take notes throughout the meal. The staff will wonder if you?re a restaurant reviewer, even though, in reality, you could be writing your to-do list for the next day, or penning your latest literary masterpiece. You get great service and some things done for yourself.

By Gina Luca

* Gina is a freelance writer whose passion for talking to people on the Internet provides much inspiration for her writing.