I didn’t bother trying to watch a movie I wasn’t interested in, instead I got coffee and window-shopped. I found a nice bookstore that had newly opened and looked for anything about wedding planning or finances. I guess I’m always in work mode or fix it mode. It’s so hard to relax, I haven’t done it in such a long time that I don’t remember how to do it. We were able to finally spend the day together, uninterrupted, when Brooks returned.
But today I’m really going to relax even if I have to make myself. I’m going to do some gardening and order pizza from the local gas station that delivers. And tonight, I’ve got more time to myself. Brooks was at his house doing some long-neglected home repairs. Once we get married he is going to move into my house so his needs to be ready to sell by next year.
I changed into some old clothes for gardening and heard my phone ring. It’s Rhonda from The Diner. “Hi Dais’, I really need you today. Can you work a shift today?”
“Sure,” I said, falling onto the bed, there goes my day of relaxation. I don’t mind helping people but waitressing is the hardest job. You’re constantly on your feet and never get a break, the opposite of what my day was going to be.
“It’s only one shift until Karen can get here to take over. Suz went into labor this morning and I can’t find anyone else to help, sorry. I know it’s not your favorite thing to do but it will only be a few hours.”
“Ok, what time do you need me to be there?”
“Can you be here in 10 minutes?” I could tell Rhonda was biting her lip, it’s a habit she has when she’s stressed and I could hear it in her voice. “- for the lunch rush?” Rhonda just made my day a whole lot worse. Everyone goes to the Diner for lunch, not only is it going to be busy but everyone will want to talk and they don’t understand that I had to work instead of socialize.
“Sure, I’ll be there.” Maybe if I pretend I lost my voice I can rush through lunch without any issues. I’ll make a little note to tape to my nametag.
When I got to The Diner Rhonda runs me through the basics, it’s been about a year since I’ve subbed there. The caos had already began, everyone’s arriving for lunch. They seat themselves and wait for one of the two waitresses on duty to help them. I’m one of the lucky ones along with Betty who’s about 100 years old, loves to chat it up with the customers, and is super slow. Looks like I’ll be pretty much on my own. Rhonda’s working too but she does everything else but cook and sometimes she’s been known to do that when the cook’s sick, also known as her husband.
We worked it out that Rhonda will do the drink orders and Betty and I will do the rest.
“What’ll you have Jim?” I asked, all business and trying not to be polite because I know it will start a chain reaction of having to talk too much. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind talking to these people. They are great people but with us being so short staffed and having only two waitresses who might as well be deaf, dumb, and blind I just want to get through with this as quickly as possible and be able to serve everyone their meals.
“Daisy, you know, I’ve been meaning to call you. I have this issue that’s been bothering me.” Here we go, he’s going to discuss some kind of work he needs done on his house but can’t afford it. We do help people out when they need something and are short of cash but Jim’s been trying to get us to remodel his house and add an addition for pennies. That would put us in the poor house. He’s one of wealthiest tightwads I’ve ever met. I would feel sorry for him if I knew he was struggling but he’s definitely not. “You know that fella you’re going to marry, you should just get rid of him and marry me. I’ll treat you right, you know I will.” I laughed as he grabs my hand, I know he’s joking, and he gets up and started to try to kneel down and propose to me. He asks me to marry him every time I see him.
“Jim, don’t you dare get down on that floor, you know you will never get up!” Said Jim’s wife, in the seat next to him, not impressed by his antics.
I took their order and rushed back to the kitchen so their burgers can get started. I’m headed to another table that I thought was next when someone grabed me. “Daisy, can you take our order? We’ve been waiting for twenty minutes and I have to get back to work soon.”
“I’ve been waiting for thirty minutes, it’s my turn. I’ve got to deliver everyone’s mail before the sun goes down!” said Nathan, the town’s mailman.
I looked around frantically for Betty and see that she was just standing around talking to a table of her old friends. Apparently, from the looks of it, while I was getting the quick tour and training she wasn’t doing much in the way of waitressing. All the tables were full and no one had food yet.
I rushed over to Rhonda who is filling up drinks at the counter, “Can you get Betty to shut her trap and take some orders?” Now, I’m not normally like this but I could just see everyone with their pitch forks chasing me down main street because I didn’t get their burger and fries to them fast enough. Meanwhile, Betty’s standing in the back of the rioting crowd asking how everyone’s day has been. “Oh, we’re hanging someone!” one rioter says to Betty. “Wonderful, who is it?” she would say. Everyone forgives Betty because she’s old. Me, they won’t forgive.
“Sure Hun, take a deep breath and here’s a cold glass of water.” She handed me the glass and I took a few drinks which helped to cool down the heat that was rising inside from the stress. But it’s only just begun.
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