Server Surprise

11 Jul

To make some extra money, I decided to take a part-time job as a server.  I thought it would be a great way to make extra money. During the interview,  I confidently said I have no doubt I will be a good server because I was one in high school and was a flight attendant several years ago.

I went into training and was thinking, “This won’t be too bad. I know I can memorize all of the menus, table/chair numbers and the POS system.  It will be a piece of cake to manage several orders. No problem.”

Wow, was that a bunch of naïve and overconfident thoughts. After three nights of training in the dining rooms and bar, I still felt like I didn’t have a clue as to what I was doing. The first night on my own, I thought the world was going to collapse. I had only two tables, but it felt like I had 50.

I had such a fear of messing up food orders that I could barely keep track of what people wanted. When it was time to open bottles of wine, I couldn’t get the stupid opener to work and had to have two members open the bottles for me. How embarrassing.

I managed to get through the first night and then I had a week off. When I had to return last night, I felt like I was starting all over again. I only had three tables, but it was two tables and one needy table that felt like 20 people instead of 7.

Questions were asked about food items that I didn’t know and drinks were ordered that I had no idea how to make. Everyone who works there is great and helpful, but I felt bad having to ask several times how to do things.

Luckily, the members are very nice and understanding when I say I’m a “newbie”. They actually have fun with it and so we end up joking about it and all turns out fine. However, I know the point will come when I won’t have new status anymore and I can’t use that excuse.

After a shift, I’m completely exhausted and ready to get off of my feet. Considering I’m more than double the age of the college kids working with me, I am glad I can somewhat keep up with them. They may have youth on me, but I have the maturity and personality to handle difficult situations and make the members happy.

I now have a newfound respect for anyone who is a server. If you have never been in the service industry, you have no idea how difficult of a job it is to make it look easy. It is way tougher than I ever would’ve imagined, yet at the end of the shift, I have a great sense of accomplishment and glad I gave the members a nice dining experience.

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