Friday, November 26, 2010
I SHOULD call him my "Hebro."
Not only is he my brother and my biggest critic ( with his sharp wit) but my hero.
He picks on me relentlessly when we are all together but it reminds me of what I tell my fellow co workers: "I only pick on the people that I like."
I consider myself a pretty funny person.
I consider my brother the funniest guy on the planet and he obviously loves me to pieces.
He has been good to not only me and my sister but to both of our families...especially after our only remaining parent died in 2002. Our Mom died in 1977 unexpectedly and our Diddy died in 2002 from West Nile Virus.
Poor (wealthy compared to us) Chris has been saddled with his two sisters ever since and like the good sisters we are, have hoisted our own problems and some of our kid's right onto his big broad shoulders.
Thank goodness he grew out of that skinny stage he was in for over 30 years and ended up being a big broad man who thankfully had shoulder surgery a couple of years back...gotta take care of those shoulders, they have a heavy load to bear!
He has taken over for my Mama and Diddy. He has been our salvation more times than I care to keep track of and 'keeps on giving.' Granted he rags me all the time, but who am I to talk about ragging people? It is one of my best qualities...finding humor in any given situation.
If you can't laugh at life...you'll end up crying WAY too often and it doesn't help anything, especially gray hair and wrinkles.
My brother used to read my blog. He probably quit about a year ago when things started going south for us. He thought "I'll just wait for the text or phone call...it'll be a lot less painful when I make out my check."
When I finally make it as a published author (and I swear I will) I have so many people to pay back and actually have a record to go by. My sis and "Hebro" are tops on my list followed by MANY friends and relatives .
I was goofing around on my blog page tonight before posting and came across some facts that amazed my tiny mind.
Over the past few months I had 7,552 views from people in the United States. I had 110 from people in Canada. From Denmark there have been 76. Russia...48. From the UK I had 35. From China I had 33 and from South Korea I had 31. Japan gave me 29 hits and believe it or not Slovenia came in with 28. Mexico brought up the rear with 17 views but it all totally blew me away!
Come on "Amigos" GET ON BOARD!! (Or Abroad)
Once my life settles down a bit and I can focus more on my desires instead of my demands and commitments, I truly think I can make something of my writing.
I am never at a loss for the written word (or the spoken one for that matter.)
Putting feelings and emotions into words that other people can read and FEEL is something that has always made me happy and also gives me a hard copy of my life, my journey and how I felt every step of the way.
I kept a journal all of my life...the first one I have is from when I was nine. I stopped the actual writing in books after Massey was born.
I picked up again when technology came along and made it so much easier for me.
I have so many things to be thankful for. I have so many things to complain about. I have so many causes to fight for (other than my family surviving.)
I think people like to read my posts. I think I write a lot of things that people only think about in secret parts of their minds.
You know what I think?
I think life is a journey and if you don't write it all down somewhere..."How will they possibly be able to remember you decades and generations from now?"
Hoping to be remembered and hoping to be a person that people will WANT to remember.
Til next time...COTTON
Monday, November 22, 2010
Right now I am getting 24 MPG when I used to get 38 MPG. Thank the Lord for my 10 cents off per gallon via my Kroger plus card!
On the way to work this morning I saw a guy on the by pass "Carrying" his bicycle down the road. He had it hefted over his shoulder and was sweatin' like crazy.
I thought "How much does THAT suck?" You are already having to ride a bike and your bike is in such bad shape that you have to carry it over your shoulder! I think I may have chucked it into a ditch and felt twenty pounds lighter...(you can always go BACK for the bike.)
Worked a lunch shift and zoomed home for a short break before working a dinner shift. Massey and I had to go shop the Thrift stores for a frame we needed for a pic that she drew for a good friend. when I picked her up I noticed that she was particularly down. I asked her what was wrong and she blew me off until I relentlessly broke her down.
Her Band, her Guard, her BFF 's are all in Hawaii marching in a parade. It was a $2000.00 trip and one that we just couldn't afford this year. I missed many fund raising opportunities because I simply had to work too much and have barely had time to think, much less participate in the fund raisers. She told me (actually sweetly) that she was tired of us being poor. I told her that no one hated her not being in Hawaii more than me and that if this was the worst thing that EVER happened to her she would be a lucky person.
I did what any other mother would do...took her to "Ross, Mess For Less" and bought her a pair of jeans for ten bucks.
She perked up some and I felt like a #$@* of a Mom for having to make a pair of jeans make up for the trip of her young life time.
She has rebounded just like the girl I raised her to be.
I told her we have had one TOUGH LONG year. But out of the 23 years I have been with Tim...I guess we were due.
What's ONE bad year?
Oh yeah, now I remember...it's twelve months of scraping and scratching and twelve months of other people, friends and family helping us survive.
I told Massey that we are some of the luckiest people around.
We are hanging on to our house by a Rayon thread. Thankfully God's hand is mighty and strong.
I have SO much to be grateful for.
I have SO many people to pay back.
Life has already taken (almost) a 180 turn. I have a great job, my husband is working again and we are "Putsing" our way back on the road to normalcy.
When I get depressed, when I feel down and out I just think about the millions that would trade their life for mine in an instant.
What if I didn't have a family that loved me ?
What if I didn't have friends that come to my rescue time after time after time?
What if my kids weren't healthy...what if one of them was missing and I didn't know what happened or where they were?
I am a lucky, lucky woman.
So my brother is tired of me. I am sure he feels like blocking my calls but always takes them anyway...he's my hero. (That's what he gets for being a bachelor...he inherits my problems, reminding him why he never had kids.)
This Thanksgiving is MY Thanksgiving.
I am one lucky person. I have survived a year that I never intend to have to go through again.
I lost my humility and my pride long ago. They are both highly over rated.
What I have gained from this experience is immense.
What I have gained is a sense of "Karma." I gained the knowledge that if you persevere, if you help others...they will help you!
Everyone have a HAPPY THANKSGIVING.
Be sure to stop..check your life, check the life of others and do what you can to make a difference.
Til next time...COTTON
Saturday, November 20, 2010
A guy I have never seen walked into Zach's bathroom and luckily shut the door.
At 3AM I politely (not really) banged on his door and told them to cut the music and go to bed. At least I knew they would all sleep well past noon.
I went to the grocery store this morning before going to work and when I pulled back into the garage, one of the boys (I think maybe his name is Caleb or maybe Justin or maybe something else) came right out and unloaded my groceries for me. I think I like this guy!
Before I left for work...the "other" one carried all my dirty laundry I had piled in a basket at the top of the stairs downstairs for me and put it in the laundry room. I think I may like these new friends.
One of the boys needed a ride home so I took him on my way to work.
When I came home after my shift...he was back on my couch with the other two stooges. Maybe he needed some clean clothes or is one of those people that feel funny taking a dump anywhere but home. Regardless, he was back and settled in on the couch.
I went out back to feed the dogs and noticed they had lit the fire pit. They had used my can of gasoline to start it up...it was still sitting in the yard. Actually it wasn't gasoline, it was my small can of gas/oil mix that I use for my weed eater. Zach said they roasted hot dogs. Nothing says "Dinner" more than a hot dog cooked in a gas/oil mix!
They are all back in the living room ...all of them have fallen asleep in the position they sat down in. One on the lounge chair and two on the sofa.
I felt a moment of weakness and threw a blanket across the one on the lounge chair and spread a comforter across Curly and Moe.
Zach looks like he has a black eye from all the oil that burned off the fire from their weenie roast and the other two may be completely passed out from the fumes they ate.
It's like I tell Massey..."Just find the least stupid man you can fall in love with and SHOVE him down the path of life."
At least Larry and Curly helped me with the groceries and laundry. Moe may need some TOUGH LOVE.
Til next time... Moe's Mom
Friday, November 19, 2010
Only bad thing is it is the oil that was leaking out of my car.
I have been having car issues for a while now. My car was hesitating to start a couple of weeks ago and when I checked the oil...it was sizzling on the bottom of the stick. I dumped in three quarts and discovered my battery was going bad.
My brother in law bought me a re conditioned battery and the car started again. Only problem was when Massey and I were coming home from the store the "STOP" light came on and told me to cut engine off immediately. It's a freaky kind of message to get from a car and I had no choice but to keep driving...I mean , we HAD to get home. It was getting dark and beginning to rain, not to mention we had groceries in the back seat.
I parked it in the garage and hoped that after a good night's rest the car would feel better.
I knew that I was well overdue for an oil change. The last time I had my oil changed was when my 18 year old son changed it with help from the neighbor's son.
NEVER send a Man/Child to do a job that a woman can do with only spending 30 bucks and knowing it is done right even if it is by an idiot at the Quik Lube place. At least then I could blame THEM.
I got my nephew who is in his mid twenties to change my oil yesterday. The oil filter my son put on my car WAS for VW. Yes I drive a Passat, but the filter was for a VW truck. I don't even think they MAKE those anymore. It was the size of a coke can. The filter it required was the size of a large can of tomatoes (Yes I am a woman and this was my gauge for the size of the filter.)
My garage floor is covered with oil from the change. I have been dumping in oil to keep the car running...probably added too much and am just lucky that the car is still running at all.
I have LOTS of luck..it's just all BAD.
By the grace of God the car is still somehow running. It's running rough and I am sure there is some damage...but at least it is running.
My life has been a comedy of errors (that's the way I make myself think positively about it.)
I want to complain, I want to cry and I want to feel sorry for myself.
Then I think about my friend's son who is now a triple amputee at the age of 22 from stepping on an IED in Afghanistan. I think about the Chilean miners..almost 70 days almost a mile under the surface of the earth. I think about the young girl suffering from cancer that wore not only a hearing aide but a prosthetic leg and was discovered bit by bit with no help from the people entrusted with her care and well being. These are things for me to be worried about.
An oil leak and possible engine damage to my car ... I almost feel embarrassed to complain.
My life seems grim almost every day. But when I put it all into perspective and take in the big picture, I feel like the guy lying on the couch in the insurance commercial, just waiting for the drill Sargent to throw the box of tissues at me.
Sometimes I feel like I don't even deserve tissues.
I have started to feel "Mamy Pamy" again when I should just feel grateful that I am ALIVE.
Life knocks you down...again and again.
You can give up or you can go on.
Til next time...COTTON
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Last night was okay at work but working a double just wears me out. You get almost no time between shifts...well you do but when you live my life your break consists of leaving work, zooming to the high school to take your daughter dinner before she leaves on the bus to a football game, screaming by the house to feed and water the dogs, check your email and brush your teeth.
I had to pick her up at the school after work and as usual I stayed up late blogging.
I made the executive decision to sleep in late. I woke up around 11:30 but didn't let my feet touch the floor until I had to get ready for work at 2:00.
It's a good thing I took the first part of the day to relax. I walked in the door at work around 4PM and ate some food I had brought from home. Then the bottom fell out of the world.
I was so busy that I didn't even have time to pick on other servers (one of my favorite things to do.)
I had a couple of tables going when I got seated with a nine top. After they left I got seated with a five top, then a four top then an eight top and then another four top...BAM BAM BAM.
Barbara doesn't play when there are people to be seated and doesn't mind throwing you to the wolves one bit. She just wants to be sure the wolves have a seat and a great experience and meal.
Somehow I made it through. Somehow my PHD in BS paid off. Somehow I didn't lose my mind (what's left of it.)
I made more money tonight than I ever have in a five hour period. I worked my butt off for it but now know that I can do it. I finally have the HUGE menu down and have gotten pretty knowledgeable about the wines. I can sell instead of take orders. I can suggest and recommend where I used to fake it totally.
It has taken me six months to learn enough about Italian food and wine to start to make the difference between being an order taker and being a good server and salesman.
The Holidays have finally hit our restaurant and I am ready! I am ready to make up for a crappy year and look forward to making up some serious ground.
I have already made a few new regulars and have even had some regulars from my old restaurant start coming in to see me.
Before you know it I will be able to actually have maybe not my head but at least my nostrils above water.
What a wonderful feeling this is!
What is more wonderful is that I am doing it in a place that seems to love me, appreciate me and a place that is not corporate owned. It is family owned and they play by their own family rules. Do a good job, do what they ask...make the people happy and in return YOU feel happy.
It will be a slim Christmas again at our house...WHO CARES? My kids are old enough to know "There ain't no Santa."
I have landed in a place that has given me the chance to make EVERY DAY Christmas!
Slipping into a tub with bubbles...not Calgon, not even Mr. Bubbles. Just me putting my toe into the spigot and pouring shampoo into the tub. It is still a bubble bath.
Before you know it I will be able to buy me some Mr. Bubble. Before you know it I will be able to buy me some Calgon. Before you know it I won't feel like "Take me away." I will feel like "Bring it on."
If business keeps up like this...maybe there WILL be a Santa!
Til next time...COTTON
Friday, November 12, 2010
Of course Massey was bummed but I could also tell she was almost as relieved as I was. I have often asked myself "Is she a member of the Guard team or the Drama team?"
When you have 30 teens together...all female except for two males, the drama never stops but often escalates. They are a terrific bunch of kids, but they ARE kids.
Kids under a tremendous amount of pressure and kids that all have a monthly cycle (save two.)
Sometimes it is a Jerry Springer show. Sometimes it is one of Oprah's most heart touching shows. But it is ALWAYS a show...and in the Guard World "The show MUST go on."
Tonight was the end of THIS season.
As I rub my hands furiously and quizzically across my face in a fashion that says "God help me" Winter Guard is right around the corner.
Massey has decided to do one more season...I guess they got picked up by "Real TV" or maybe there is a new network "Guard Gone Wild" that I haven't heard of yet.
I write this in half jest mode. I love that she is a part of something that keeps her motivated. I love that she is involved with her school and with a great group of kids. I hate that my life is at a point where I feel like I am constantly scrambling to just be a part of her world.
Granted I think I made my mark in the "Funnel Cake World" and that may be my legacy even after she graduates.
This season is over...this season is DONE.
Now comes the Winter Guard and a whole new season of me scrambling and screaming to the school or competitions at the last possible minute. Arranging rides for her when I can't be there or worrying about if I sent in money for her meals at the competition.
I try to remind myself that over a year ago we were making six figures a year. For years and years I was a room Mom , attended every event and donated at the drop of a hat. I was Mrs. Cleaver, Mrs. Brady...heck I was even Aunt Bee.
So what...now I feel like Eddie Haskell's mom. Nobody ever said his Mom was bad, but who ever saw her?
At least they KNOW me at the school. (guess my hair do pays off) I think they know I try to be involved when I can, and those parents that are in the place we USED to be have been fantastic to us and have my deepest and most sincere gratitude.
My girl has it tough....she has a wacky Mom. She is old enough to know what is going on in our house and has the fortitude to go out for the Guard, know that she is blessed and know that she has to give it her all.
This time next year, I swear that I will be back on top. My kids will have learned a valuable lesson and I will have something to laugh about in the old folks home years from now when they visit me in my first floor room (they are easier to escape from.)
Life is good if you are breathing... everything else is a bonus.
Til next time...COTTON
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
I am sicker than ANY of them. I am sick of hearing their coughs. I am sick of seeing them lay around feeling miserable. I am sick of washing towels and scrubbing bath rooms.
I guess I am too mean to get sick (Thank the Lord for small blessings.)
It took Massey all weekend to feel better...Amoxicillin helped tremendously.
Zach never had a sore throat just a fever and a cough that made me cringe. Tim obviously had Typhoid Fever. He rarely gets sick but when he does he is ALWAYS seemingly at Death's door. He stayed sequestered in our bedroom...that I haven't slept in since Saturday for fear of catching his "Disease." He would make an appearance once a day looking rougher than Otis Campbell after a week long bender. He would get something to drink and return to the "Dungeon of Disease."
Looking back I am tempted to blame it all on my oldest son who came by two weeks ago sicker than sin and stayed for three days, hacking his germs all over the place. I know that when kids get sick...even though they are 24 they love to be at home where they feel taken care of and know that at least some soup will be in the kitchen cabinet. TJ got lucky and we even had some NyQuil. He started off staying in his old room on the bottom floor of our house but as he began to feel worse he felt he needed the sofa in the living room (which also has a cable box with 400 channels.) I bet he watched fifty movies while hacking his germs all over the second floor of the house. Once he had watched every movie on cable he decided to leave.
Oh, he "Left" alright! He left his germs to infiltrate my house, infiltrate my other two kids and age me ten years.
I am not sure why I didn't get sick...and don't want to jinx myself by even wondering.
I think after you raise three kids a mom is immune to almost everything there is.
I had to work again tonight...I gave myself a day of doing nothing but watching TV and washing clothes. By 4:00 I felt like I had had a vacation and could go into work feeling a bit refreshed.
Massey has decided to do another season of Guard after her coach sent me an email about her talent and devotion and broke us down with another offer of a half scholarship. There was a meeting at the school for Guard tonight that was mandatory for parents. I had to work and Tim was sleeping off the last of his Typhoid Fever before returning to work.
Massey pulled out her big guns and talked her Uncle into taking her to the meeting. My brother in law went as a "Guard Uncle" and stood in for me. I told my sister on the phone tonight after work that we would get her husband a tee shirt that said "Guard Uncle Gone Wild."
So my house is a wreck...more sheets are in the washer. Lysol has taken over as air freshener and I am getting up in the morning (still sleeping on the sofa) to try and rid my house of the last of this deadly curse that has been hovering over our heads for the past two weeks.
If I ever experience a normal day again I won't know how to react. I am used to the crazy bizarre life I have been living for the past year and have even gotten used to the fact that "NORMAL" left my vocabulary and my existence a long long time ago.
What is even MORE bizarre is that it is starting to feel NORMAL!
Oops...the dryer just buzzed. Time to shove in another load and spray some more Lysol.
Til next time..."Cautious COTTON"
Sunday, November 7, 2010
After Lunch I had one hour before my dinner shift and swung by the drug store for some cold medicine for Zach and Tim, who are both sick now too. Men are horrible patients. Let me change that...TIM is a horrible patient. Zach is pretty tough and doesn't complain much. Tim rarely ever gets sick but when he does LOOK OUT!
I bought a big bag of Naval oranges and have them all sucking down some vitamin C and pumping them full of meds.
Last night I put a roast in the crock pot at 2AM before I went to bed so they would all have something to eat on while I worked all day. (It's still sitting in the crock pot which didn't surprise me in the least.) I guess they were all thinking about me and left me something warm to eat when I finally got home.
I had a party of 20 when I got back to work. I worked it with my buddy "Hoke." (previous post)
We had just taken the order when all the computers at work crashed. We all had to hand write tickets for the kitchen to cook the food, manually write up tickets for customers and add them up like a Waffle House check.
Then the credit card machine crashed and stopped processing credit cards.
All the while, we were trying to operate the store as normally as possible and keep the customers happy and unaware of the chaos we were dealing with behind the scenes.
Luckily my party was great...I knew one of the girls and they were an easy bunch to please. I was actually taking their order when one woman I have never seen before said "Are you the one who writes the blog?"
Guess I am getting semi- famous!
By this point in the day I was getting "Semi- Tired."
Waiting on large parties is tough enough...having to depend on your brain instead of letting the computers do all your thinking for you is outrageous in the year 2010!
Finally the computers came back on line and THEN all the servers had to go and ring in every order they had hand written, every bar drink they had scratched down on a napkin for the poor bartender to make and on top of that send a special instruction with each order "Not to make it."
My tiny brain was smoking...it was frazzled just trying to catch up.
What a world we live in now. We have become so reliant on computers and technology. We trust a calculator and a computer system more than we trust our own brain. It makes you lazy, it makes you not calculate anything or do what we used to consider "cognitive thinking."
What a sad statement this is of our society today. Y2K hit us hard at the restaurant tonight. Modern technololgy has made us morons. We all rely on email, not snail mail. We all rely on a tiny chip in a computer. We all rely on something inantimate to make our decisions and do our work.
Maybe Waffle House has it right. They all know their math, they all know how to add up a bill. They all know what the sales tax is. And on top of it all, they still say " Morning, Hon...Whatcha want?"
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Tim was sitting at the kitchen table eating fish sticks before he left for work. I told him to heat up some salmon and have some potato salad. I knew our kitchen was pretty bare...my car had been broken down since Monday and I hate to bum a ride home from work and say "Do you mind if we stop by Kroger for me to pick up some groceries?"
Tim said he was going to have some field peas with his fish sticks but he couldn't get the can open. I don't have an electric can opener but I DO have a really nice hand held one. From the look of the can of peas...Tim has never learned to use it. By the look of the pan he cooked his fish sticks on , he hasn't learned how to operate the sprayer located on the sink either.
I waited until he left for work and got out my camera...this was too good to pass up! Click on the pictures and see what a monster I have created. Actually it's pretty pitiful.
Tim is a wonderful husband and a great father but when it comes to the "thinking department" I guess he gave up after he met me. It is all totally my fault.
When I first met Tim he had just come out of a bitter divorce and was living in a house that was just that "A House." No towels to speak of, no curtains and not even a wash cloth. His ex wiped him out...even took his tooth brush. But at least he had a house and a sofa he was still paying on. He had a couple of pairs of jeans and shirts but it was a pretty bare existence.
I moved right in and took over.
I cleaned and brought all the furniture I had in my little apartment and set up house keeping.
I spoiled Tim rotten and at the time it was my pleasure to do it. Looking back it was the absolute worst thing I could have done. Women are nurturers by nature...we are doer's by necessity. If something needs to be done, we GET IT DONE!
I felt like Tim needed to be taken care of and I was the one who could do just that! What I SHOULD have done is keep letting him discover how to make it on his own and fend for himself.
Now over twenty years down the road he has simply given up on the thinking part when at home... he has learned that I will do all his thinking for him and tell him exactly what to do and when to do it.
I guess that makes him a smart husband...but it also makes him a pain in my butt .
Massey has been sick as a dog the past few days but today when she actually felt well enough to come downstairs I showed her the picture of the can of beans her Dad tried to open. She laughed as much as I wanted to when I saw it sitting on the counter and we bonded once again over the obviously dropped gene that men suffer from...especially when they marry a strong woman.
So it's MY fault. It really is! I coddled him that first romantic year and then dragged and shoved him through the other 20 years. He is a monster that I alone created. I took right over and he was at such a low point in his life that he was grateful for the takeover.
Now I am fifty years old and raising not only three kids but a husband as well.
It could be worse. He could be ugly to look at or horrible to our kids. Instead he is a handsome man who depends on me for almost everything. He is the head of our family and I am the neck...I tell him which way to turn.
When you first meet the love of your life you want to do everything to make him happy. You want to spoil him and make him think he can't live without you. Twenty years down the road you end up living with the" Monster you created" and wonder how he could ever survive without you?
One time when we were all at my sister's house for a holiday I made the comment that I was worried what would happen to my kids if I died suddenly and Tim had to raise them alone.
My brother spoke right up and said "They'd be fine...Tim would be remarried in two weeks."
I guess it's too late in the game for me to go back...too late for me to change the past. But as God as my witness, Massey will never spoil a boy friend and if she ever decides to marry we will have a SERIOUS talk about NOT creating the monster I did.
Til next time...WAY TOO BOSSY COTTON !
Friday, November 5, 2010
I had to work a catering job for my restaurant at 6AM. I fell into bed at 2:30 to be awakened at 4:30 by the absurd beeping of my alarm clock. It is the most annoying and irritating "GET UP" beeping that has ever been programed into an alarm clock and that is why it works.
My car broke down on Monday when I got into the seat to crank it up with NO time to spare. It did NOTHING and luckily my husband was still awake having just arrived home from a 12 hour shift on the loading dock.
He wanted me to help him push it out of the garage and try to jump it off when I screamed at him "I gotta go NOW."
He took me to work (driving slow as Aunt Bee with Barney as a co pilot) and I just felt like life had once again punched me in my small chest and shoved me down another path of ultimate despair. I worked a straight through double and bummed a ride home. Tuesday my brother in law took me to work and I worked another straight through double shift and bummed yet another ride home.
Wednesday I had to bum a ride at 5:30 in the morning from another server who was working the same catering job I was.He is a pretty new server (see previous Back Street Boy post.)
He was really nice and said he didn't mind picking me up at all. He said to dress warm because his driver side window wouldn't roll up. More good news for me!
Woke up at 4:30 to the sound of wind and rain...not a good sign. I had originally told him I would meet him at the end of our sub division by the MPH sign but after looking outside decided to call him and ask him to come into the subdivision and pick me up at my house.
He pulled into my driveway and I told him not to be offended but I really didn't want to ride shot gun. I opted to sit in back on the driver's side for a little more warmth. He told me there was a blanket there but I said I would be fine wrapped up in my trench coat with a wool lining that my brother gave me for Christmas a few years back. We were ten minutes from my house when I asked him where that blanket was. The rain and wind was freezing me but I was just grateful to have a ride so I buried my hands and feet in the blanket and counted my blessings.
We had to go to Carrollton about 40 minutes from Newnan and missed our turn off on the by pass. He said "I think we went too far" and I agreed. I told him to turn around and he turned down the next street.
He passed the first driveway without turning around in it and then the next. He kept driving slowly in the rain and fog down an isolated street I have never been on and as he rounded the third winding curve I began to think to myself "How well do I really know this guy?' As I started imagining all kind of scenarios (none of them good) I said "You know my kids had a chip implanted in my neck last year for tracking purposes."
He laughed and said he thought the street was a horse shoe and would dump us back out on the by pass. Thank goodness it did and I started to relax in my frozen state. He was right and we continued on our way.
It was pitch black dark and once we hit the Carrollton city limits we got lost again. He pulled into a gas station to ask a man pumping gas into his truck for directions. The man gave the most confusing long winded and unhelpful directions I have ever heard. After about three minutes of his rambling, my co worker said to him "I'm not going to be able to remember any of that." I told my co worker just to ask where I-20 was and the ole geezer said pointing up the road "Right up ere."
So we drove right up "ere" and there it was!
When we finally found the place and pulled in (wind and rain still blowing in my face) we parked. I told Billy (my co worker) "Be sure to lock the doors when we get out." He gave me a look like "Har dee har har" but at least we had made our destination.
It was conference for a large corporation..260 people. We quickly changed into our catering shirts and with my feet still numb from the ride began the breakfast shift. We had biscuits with ham and biscuits with chicken, fresh pineapple, blueberries, cantaloupe and honey dew melon. There were croissants, orange juice, cranberry juice and coffee.
After breakfast they began their conference in the ball room and we all broke down the breakfast, cleaned up and prepared for lunch. In the main lobby we had a snack table set up for their breaks...power bars, fresh fruit, water bottles and sodas. The woman organizing the entire affair wanted someone at all times at the snack table. This conference was held on a college campus and she didn't want students strolling though the lobby thinking all this was laid out for them. I went to guard the snacks and my ride to the event (who said he felt like he had been Hoke driving Miss Daisy) kept me company. The college we were at took full advantage of having 260 people at their school and set up a table right next to our "Snack stand." They had phamplets about their school and little give a way goodies on the table (which they left un occupied.) My buddy and I picked up one of the chap sticks they had, hand sanitizers and ink pens to keep. My buddy showed me a great notepad he had gotten and I was dismayed that I had missed that give a way. He said they had a box of them under the table so I told "Hoke" to go get me one. Of course he got me one and we enjoyed our stint of shooing away college students and having a little time to just relax after our adventurous trip to the campus.
About twenty minutes later another co worker showed up to relieve us of our duty. We showed him our goodies and my buddy said "Don't you want one of these neat notebooks?' They were the perfect size for an order pad that we could use at the restaurant. Our co worker is one of the nicest most sincere people you could ever meet. He was a little apprehensive about the notebook but my buddy said "No...they are right here under this table...TAKE one." As my buddy handed him one, he looked around to make sure no one was looking and tucked it away under OUR table.
When my buddy and I resumed our watch at the "Snack table" we dug out the notebook we had forced on our friend and opened it to the first page and wrote "This notebook was stolen by Leonard **********." I bet we laughed for fifteen minutes over THAT one!
It was a hard job and lots of work to do but I haven't laughed that much in a while. From wondering if my co worker was driving me down a road to meet Jeffery Dalhmer's cousin to meeting the guy at the gas station who told us every relative he knew who lived in the path of his directions to ratting out our friend who we had FORCED to take the note pad.
Luckily we all got to eat left over food and I am here to tell you it was the best eating I have had in a while.
I had to be back at the restaurant for a 4:30 shift and ole HOKE drove me back. Once at the store I was thirty minutes early for my shift and crashed on a booth in the back of the store for a quick nap.
Got me a new order pad...got me some chap stick. Also took home TONS of left over food from the catering. The above pic is of all the food in my refrigerator that my family has been living off of for the past two days.
I am broke..WE are broke, but somehow we make it through. Somehow I always find something to laugh at and some way to make life laughable if nothing else.
I told my buddy as he dumped me back at work for my third double in a row "Hoke, you're my BEST friend."