Since the Fourth falls on a Tuesday this year it got started on Friday and won't end until late Tuesday night...in other words, a servers worst nightmare. Not to mention I now live in Orlando now, the land of redunkulous heat index.
I was the opening server today at two fifteen, love it! First one in, first one out. I got there and the heat index was 104. Unfortunate for me, they (our parent company) were in full swing setting up for a Fourth of July celebration right outside of our restaurant. Carnival games, free snow cones, activities for all the kids and plenty of booze if you walked through our doors. We have a solarium on the front side of our restaurant.
It's extremely nice; it can be glass enclosed and with a press of a button, sun screens come down to block out the sun.
The glass can also be lifted up with another touch of a button and either be fully screened in or with screens up is an open air room.
It's a pretty cool place to work and food is off the chain great.
I knew I was in trouble when the peeps started piling in the courtyard right at five...the time the celebration started.
Needless to say, I left work at eleven...after hoping to be home by dark thirty. That's okay too.
I was whooped, everyone was...but most of them are still in their twenties and I'm barely still in my fifties.
I don't know how we pulled it off but we did.
The excessive heat drove a lot of people into our place just to escape it. They'd eat a hot dog out front with their kids, along with a free snow cone then ask to be seated and order just enough to keep them in the air conditioned building.
Can't much blame them...with "much" being the operative word. Most were really nice and I got extremely lucky. Some servers got some really raw deals.
Karma...it's a powerful thing.
It was like we were a gas station on the side of a hot dusty highway with a really nice restroom you didn't need to ask for the key to.
The bigger picture is this...
It was put on to get our name out there. We're a new place and a great opportunity to let people see what a great place we are. Granted, our restrooms were our biggest selling point today, along with the A/C...but the restrooms are extremely nice and the A/C was working great.
My bum knee (which I hurt at skate night years back when the kids were little in a speed race for mothers...which I handily won btw) went out around seven.
I was hobbling like Fetus, from Gunsmoke.
My back went out around eight. I took two Advil and struggled through. When I had to bend over to pick something up... voices screamed in my head and maybe escaped my lips a couple of times.
When I finally got in my car to come home, I turned the A/C up and the seat warmer on high to alleviate the pain.
Getting old isn't all that fun, but sure beats not getting old.
I had a table tonight during the chaos, parents with their son and was the sons' birthday (he was probably thirty). I ordered him a complimentary 'Butterscotch Toffee Sticky Bread Pudding' and wanted to stick a candle in it. I couldn't find a lighter to light the candle and was told to go to the host stand, where they keep torch lighters to light the table candles on each table. The only person at the host stand at the time was our GM. I asked him to borrow a torch lighter and he searched every drawer.
Let me insert here, our managers all wear dinner jackets. It was a billion degrees outside and he'd been out in it most of the afternoon. I don't know how they do it, other than the fact they are men and don't suffer from hot flashes like me. His face was beet red. He was irritated he couldn't find a single lighter for me to use... so just like I do, said "Maybe I can just hold the wick against your forehead...that should do it."
He didn't want to laugh but instead said "Hardy har-har."
What a crazy day, what a crazy night. And to think we still have Monday and Tuesday to go!
I didn't even ask for the Fourth off (waited too late) but incredibly enough when the schedule came out on Thursday, I am off Tuesday,Wednesday and Thursday!
So I'll work a closing shift on Monday night and be off until Friday.