Not Your Everyday News

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Time marches on

I love the restaurant business, but there are a few downsides to owning a restaurant, even a small one like ours. Your schedule is grueling, 12-14 hours days most of the time, staffing issues, keeping costs down as much as possible without cutting the wrong corner...tough stuff. But the upsides more than make up for it. Almost endless choices of food naturally, the satisfaction you feel when you get a heartfelt compliment, and of course, the people. We get all kinds in here - college students, soccer moms with kids, businessmen and women, and of course, senior citizens. The senior citizens are the ones you really get attached to. 9 out of 10 are very sweet, just super nice and alot of fun. Yes, that 1 out of 10 will occasionally come in and try to ruin your day, you know the kind - the one just impossible to please no matter how far backwards you bend - too hot, too cold, too hard, too soft, too spicy, not seasoned can go on and on. But you keep smiling and then appreciate the nice ones even more, the ones whose name you know, who have their favorite table and/or meal, the ones who bring you flowers, or the ones that you even flirt with a bit (it really makes their day!)! The downside to all this fun? They ARE senior citizens after all, so when a regular doesn't come in for a day or two, you begin to worry. Many times we'll make a phone call, or will have a mutual friend or acquaintance who can check up on them, but on occasion, there is no resource.That is when you begin to scour the obituary page...yes, I know that sounds negative and morbid, but when someone is in their 80's...or is a reality. And unfortunately, there has been a number of occasions when you open up to that page and see that name or picture. I know death is part of life, but it never gets easier, even with folks who might just be acquaintances, because you just can't help but getting attached to the nice ones. When possible, I will go to the family night or memorial service to pay my respects. Such events are sad and make you think, but you must keep marching on - remembering those who left, making new friends to try to fill the void. So flirt while you can, you never know how happy it makes a 92 year old, or if you'll have a chance to do it again.


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