I dusted off the old black and white serving attire last night and worked a job as a cater waiter. Catering jobs are almost always way easier than working at an actual restaurant. There’s a lot of “hurry up and wait” down time and you don’t have to take orders or deal with money. This one, in particular, was just passing around trays of appetizers at an office holiday party. Still, I worried that maybe it had been too long since I wielded a tray.
But, nah, I still have it. In fact, it was a refreshing change of pace to work on something that was so divorced from actual day-to-day life. The rhythms of a proper servers pace, the pivots and the sideways steps all came back. I could still memorize a menus worth of food descriptions in five minutes flat and, most importantly, I could still read people. I knew who wanted to kibitz a little and who wanted me to blend in with the wall. I knew which people were vegetarians and which people were particularly hungry. I knew who was having a good time and who was hatching a business deal.
My body, however, reminded me this morning that it had indeed forgotten what serving was like. I woke up with stiff arms and legs and even abs. (I still have abs! Woot.) Remember, this job was a breeze, a walk in the park, a lark. Easy peasy! But the very act of moving around for five hours straight and holding a tray just so was enough to remind me just how out of shape I am. Pathetic, really.
And just like when I worked in restaurants full-time, I woke up today with no desire to cook or even put together a sandwich. So Mary and I picked up Irene from the school bus and went to Swiss Chalet for lunch instead. We had two bowls of their soup (which is full of pasta and chicken and veggies) between us and discussed important questions like, “Are ponies real?” Ponies are real, but My Little Ponies are not. It’s an important distinction.
There was also table dancing.