I don’t know if I have a LOT of weird stuff on my bucket list or not, but I do have a pretty extensive to do list before I leave this body. Lot’s of the things on that list involve traveling to places near and far. Lot’s of them include beach activities. One of them is to work at a beach bar. I know that’s not exactly unattainable for most, but it’s just one of those things I’ve always wanted to do (along with owning a tiki bar on an island somewhere).
I got the opportunity to work at a beach bar this week while I’ve been in Florida assisting my aunt. I had a couple of days where she didn’t need me, mostly because I had no idea how to do the things she needed done. So, I got to work as a Hostess at a little beach bar on the Gulf.
I think I should preface this story with a couple of facts:
a.) I’ve never worked in a (real) restaurant before. I’ve worked fast food, but that’s totally different.
b.) I’ve never been a hostess or a server
c.) I struggle with social anxiety
So I wasn’t sure how it was going to go, partly because of my inexperience and partly because of my anxiety. And partly because my inexperience often causes me anxiety. I’ve always been a pretty social person and I’ve had lots of customer service jobs, but never fast paced restaurant work. Plus, whenever I have been in heavy social situations like crowded bars or restaurants, I’m usually four shots in and have all the courage and confidence in the world.
But, it actually went really well on my end. I felt kind of sorry for the servers, because I’m sure in the restaurant business there is a method to the madness. When I’m seating people there is only madness. “How many people do you have?” “4, great!” and then I look around and see where four asses will fit in four chairs and that’s where I sat them. It didn’t matter if I had just sat someone in that “section” because I didn’t really know the “sections.” They gave me a list of section numbers and table numbers but it took me the whole three days to figure out which tables were what, who was in each section, and who is that person. It was a lot like that “what’s on second” thing.
I don’t think I made the chaos worse, but I do think that at least one server wanted to take me out to the Gulf and drown me. Probably more than once. I saw a few eye rolls. I didn’t take it personally. Mostly because I knew that it was only for a couple days and also because some people are never happy. If I was a server on the beach, I would literally want every table. Give them all to me. I would want to make as much money as possible. Kids? Great. Drunks? Great. Families? Great. Singles? Great. I’m sure it’s hard to balance all the tables and whatnot. And it is the beach, so I’m sure it gets hot. And like any other job, the longer you’ve done it, the less engaged you become. But all of those things seem to be other people’s problems so maybe next time I come back I will get to see what being a server is like. And maybe one day, I’ll even make my way behind the bar.
I’d probably make a really good bartender. Mostly I think that because I used to be a really good drinker. Maybe that’s wrong thinking. But that’s how my crazy mind works.
In the end, I feel like it was a successful few days. And I dealt with people and had a good time doing it… without tequila. I’d call that a win.
And tomorrow, I get to go on my last photo shoot. So I’ll tell ya all about that next time.