I typically find work wherever I am.
Part of my experience here in Prince Albert was serving. I’ve been a server before, so I know the basic fundamentals, but wow, I forgot just how exhausting it is. Making sure everything is perfect, no matter if you have one table or six. My first couple of weeks, I didn’t make very many tips. I was new so I didn’t always get the big reservations (phew!), I didn’t know the menu, I did not understand the alcohol menu, and I was grumpy because I was hating the job. Suddenly, I realized I needed to change my perspective, or the next few weeks were going to be absolutely miserable. Might as well be in the moment, and fully experience it. Allow it to penetrate the soul, even for a short minute. Shadow the lives, and listen to their stories. Take the time, maybe hang out.
So I let go, and just let myself be. I stood in the background for a while, and just took it all in. People really are incredible.
Here are these men, walking tall behind the line. Boasting their strengths, and being exactly who they are. No matter what, they speak their mind, and everybody will still be ok. A spat every now and then, but nothing like a good drink to bring it all back to zen.
Bobby and Alexander
All the servers run rapid politely, fetching each beck and whim. They truly keep everyone organized, and the people eating are grateful for that. Each of them it seems, holding on tightly to all the true emotion and dreams they’d would rather be in.
We all stress each night for all of the clients, making sure the experience is perfect. We all have hard jobs. Here’s a few things I learnt.
* know the menu. I once had a lady order one of the four choices of steaks. She asked if this particular one comes with garlic toast, and I said yes. Not knowing, and forgetting to ask before I put the order through, when the meal came up I asked “is there garlic toast?” Of course not, this one doesn’t come with garlic toast. This lady would have been just as happy ordering the steak sandwich, which already comes with garlic toast, but I didn’t know. Now, it may seem like a small cost, but I just cost the restaurant an extra 50 cents. Plus the extra time it took to make it last minute. The lady was happy, she didn’t know, but what about the next time she comes in?
* try everything on the menu, including drinks, and the desserts. The first time I tried hunter chicken at the restaurant, it blew my mind. Every flavour on that plate complimented each other. Everything had a purpose. These cooks spend time getting the recipe right. I had a whole new appreciation for them, and the menu. It made selling a whole lot simpler.
* be amused by the “difficult” people, and accept it as a challenge. I like to observe personalities. Question everything. Why are they being demanding? Is he just wanting some extra attention? People want to be cared for, they want to be, well, served. Isn’t that our job? Yes, you might be at that table every minute, but get to know them a little. Take some time, show your own personality.
* treat every single person with respect, and don’t just “expect” a tip. People will surprise you. Be open to what they say, and really listen to what they want.
* people, usually, are there for the experience! I’ve made many many many mistakes, but I didn’t get mad or grumpy. I just apologized, laughed a little at the ridiculousness, fixed it, and tried to learn from it. I once put a straw in a pint of coors, I’ve brought one table the wrong kind of wine 3 times, and didn’t bring someone their cosmo until 30 minutes after they ordered it because I had no idea how to make it, and everyone else was busy. That’s only the things I’ll admit. But every single one of them still generously tipped me, because well, I called myself out on the fumbling fool I was. Because I laughed with them, shook my head and apologized. Because it’s not about the mistakes, it’s all about the experience. So smile, laugh, and maybe have some fun with it.
Sometimes, life brings us places we would never dream of being. Some moments are hard, but it will pass you by if you let it. Let it happen. Enjoy the moment, even if it’s ridiculous, and just be.
Signature 22 in PA, Sask.
And if you want some mouthwatering, flavour exploding, almost better then sex, make you involuntarily close your eyes and sigh food, head to Signature 22. The experience is worth it.