Monday, May 23, 2016

Nights Like These

Yes I'm a waitress, at least that's what it was called when I started doing it in 1979.

After almost forty years in the business, have come quite a long way.

Not many people can say actually still love doing what they've been doing for a living after almost forty years but I do, and mainly because I've never been this good at anything else in my life.

I also have gotten to work with all three of my kids at one time or another and still do work with my daughter at my current job. It's been an eye opening experience for her, working in a five star fine dining restaurant and think has given her new respect for what I do. I do my job the same exact way each and every shift from the time I clock in until the time I clock out, give it my all... and then some.

It's earned me respect from my managers, coworkers (who matter) and even my guests.

In return, am treated fairly and compensated unbelievably. I did the math tonight after an especially grueling shift. Yes I tipped out support staff fifty four dollars and why shouldn't I when they helped me make over fifty dollars an hour? There isn't one support staff employee who won't drop what they are doing to help me when I ask for immediate help. They know if I specifically ask for help must desperately need, it and always quickly comply.

It's called "What goes around comes around".

I try and help some of the newer servers out with my knowledge but very few of them get it and often take offense. One did just that tonight.

I've finally come to realize that if they are okay making less than half what I do, just let them. It often means I step in and take care of their customers as well but trust me, those customers realize who's taking care of them as opposed to who's waiting on them.

The logistics of my current job are redunkulous and almost glad only have four more months left. The commute, the parking, the shuttles, the security are half my job and a part I don't get paid for.

If I had found this job when in my twenties, would be sitting on almost a million bucks by now.

Instead, am continuing to do the same exact job I've been doing for over two years now, doing it the same exact way and walking away in early September with the biggest fistful of dollars I've ever held.

I had a customer tonight, an older woman who'd missed her connecting flight to Paris because of a headset issue with one of the pilots. Bad battery, didn't work properly or whatever. Didn't matter to her, she was ticked.

The first thing I said to her was "I know being delayed is awful and inconvenient but as long as you make it safely, is all that ultimately matters."

We were besties after that.

At the end of her meal she said I had turned a horrible day into a delightful evening and asked to see my manager. She raved about the food and the wine and even my service and selections.

It feels good to change someone's day for the better. I wish all servers had the same mindset.

It's so absolutely incredibly busy these days at work and wears me totally out but think I can make it four more months.

It's like God gave me this job to get us over the past and into our future. It's served the purpose well and will be forever grateful to have had this opportunity to grow as a person and server.

The only thing I won't miss about this job is the logistics of getting there but can certainly do it four more months. Sometimes get to work drenched in sweat and out of breath before I even clock in. At least doing it all in reverse is easier after I clock out. I can take my time walking back out of security, across the atrium and down to the shuttle bus which takes me to the parking deck where I park my car. Doing it all in reverse is also easier because am walking with sometimes four hundred dollars, a few times even more which makes all the sweating and huffing well worth the effort.

Now all that's left to do is to find a house to buy, pack up this one and move to Orlando. Massey will be quitting her airport job on August 19 and be my packing guru until I quit around Labor Day. We've spent the last few months cleaning out closets and drawers and have donated bags and bags and bags of things or simply given them away. Besides what's in the attic, we're down to the bare necessities and ready to roll.

 My house is looking better than it has in years. I have two windows to replace on the back side and some fencing along the front and will be a pretty awesome place to live. Zach gave me a carpet cleaner for Mother's Day and made all the difference in the world. I still want to replace the carpet in the living room with wood and should be able to do that before our exit.

The best thing of all is two of my favorite people will be renting our house here, my nephew and his recent bride. No worries about renters, trust me they will have it looking even better in no time and is a good upgrade for them. A huge fenced in yard for their own two pups and a lot more room than they have now.

I let Tim handle the renter's agreement and he once again made me proud. No down payment or first or last month's rent. He asked them what they pay now and said that would be just fine. We could have rented it for at least three  hundred more but these peeps are family and ones we love dearly.

 Once again, Paying It Forward. They get a great place to live at a great price and we don't have to worry about what's happening to our old house. We told them they could do anything to it they wanted and  sure will be more improvements. If they want to, can buy it in a year or two with the same deal...a great price.

Over the past five years feel as if we've moved through a financial mine field but survived.

My family, related and extended have hands down been our saving grace. My heart is full of thanks and mind has been set at ease for the first time in over half a decade.

It's like the good things keep on coming. It's almost surreal. Tim's skyrocketed with his new job albeit apart from his family for two years. Instead of district manager over deliveries is now manager over the entire state of Florida. Now have no need to fret about losing my current job and have the cushion of time to find another one.

Here's the thing I believe in the most.

If you try and be a good person and give life your absolute  all while still consistently paying it forward... not so much monetarily but emotionally and with a  good heart and intentions,  good things will come. You simply  have to be vigilant and patient.

Rome wasn't built in a day.

For the first time in quite a while, I feel like everything's going to be okay...and will.

The first manager at my airport job who not only scared but inspired me (above photo from his last day) is one of the main reasons for my success there.

He called not too long ago just to check in as I was turning into the terminal, screeching into the parking deck and furiously seeking a parking spot. He gave me a compliment I'll never forget.

No, he gave me inspiration.  He said he knew I would succeed because I'm a fighter who never gives up or never gives in.

It's been a journey and a really long one.

Would I change it?

Never, and absolutely not.

I was one fat ugly baby, but grew up and gave life my best shot weighing in under a hundred pounds at the age of almost fifty six.

I call that a win, any way you look at it.

Till next time...COTTON

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