Before I write this week’s story, which incidentally I wanted to write last week; I want to thank you guys for the condolences concerning the passing of our two boy llamas. Although most of the comments and condolences were directed to Elaine and Ivy, I felt and appreciate the love you guys sent out. Well, not as much as Elaine and or even Ivy felt. I felt some love even if I borrowed it from Elaine and Ivy. Thank you.
I know that some of you have been wondering and asking about the progress the three restaurants that I have been managing construction. Well, actually, no one has asked me, but you have asked Elaine and Ivy. I live vicariously through them. It makes me feel special.
I don't get angry with Ivy and Elaine for leaking information to the public before I have a chance to put my stories in print. Besides, my lawyer tells me due to the current political climate, filing a lawsuit regarding the leaking of my stories before they are published would be unwinnable.
For those of you that have not guessed (or had the story leaked to you), I have been rushing to get two of the three restaurants opened before the festival. The festival is (and was) the 1st Annual Valentine’s Day Sweetheart Festival, taking place in Northern Colorado’s City of Love.
My (the) restaurants are located on the first floor of two five-story apartment buildings and located between the apartment buildings in a City of Love owned courtyard. This courtyard is/was the location of the 1st Annual Sweetheart Festival.
City of Love (COL) personnel have been preparing for the festival for the last two months. I wish I could remember how many times the nice blond woman from the city came by to tell me the festival was coming. I think she might have been up pretty high in city government, but honestly I forgot to listen to her while she was “Chicken Littling”, me. (Is that a word? Littling?)
Two days before the festival the City of Love, officials started closing the streets around the festival. If you ever worked in construction, you can imagine how much fun it is to carry your tools and materials two blocks to get to your job. “Hurry Monner, the festival is coming!” (No one in my construction life actually calls me Monner.)
The word got out that one of the New York based broadcast news agencies was coming to film in the courtyard. I think it was the one with letters in their name. This festival was going to be big.
The television crew arrived and started setting up right outside one of the restaurants. COL personnel were shoveling snow away from the television shoot. Did I mention the courtyard was covered with snow? While I am “mentioning”, did I mention my “smart” watch tells me I walk six miles each day across that (construction language) courtyard? Sorry, where was I? Oh, yeah.
Twenty feet from welders welding, tile layers tiling, painters painting; the television crew set up for the filming. Soon, Chicken Little, a policeman and another woman were being interviewed by the television crew. A woman from the film crew walked over to me. She must have thought I looked nice. She said, “We’re filming here, could you tell the men to be quiet?” I forgot I am nice. I replied, “We’re trying to work here, could you get the (construction language) out of here?” Strangely, she didn’t have more to say. I wasn’t interviewed.
COL set up a stage, vendor booths and beer tents in the courtyard. (All forcing me to walk around and adding another mile to my daily totals.) Sorry, I have a focus problem. A giant red heart had been placed on one end of the courtyard. This will become important information in a couple minutes.
As a project supervisor, my job is to watch things develop, try to prevent disaster and accomplish a goal. I have been watching the tenants of the two apartment buildings. It seems to me a disproportionate number of the tenants own dogs, large dogs. Tenants walk their dogs mornings in the courtyard. Dogs do what dogs do. I could most likely cut my daily mileage down to four or five miles, but because dogs do what dogs do, I choose to walk around the courtyard.
At the start of the festival, COL marched 20-30 potential brides and grooms past the giant red heart into the snow covered courtyard/dog run to exchange “I do(s)”. Only in Northern Colorado can you get romance like that!
We were semi-successful getting the restaurants open for the festival. One of them opened about a half an hour after the start of the festival. While people were exchanging “I do(s) under the giant heart, I was in the restaurant, installing a toilet paper dispenser in one of the restrooms. Elaine was spending her/our Valentine’s Day at home waiting for me. At least she wasn’t standing where dogs (construction language).
Restaurant #2 needed another week. It opened the following Friday,
Restaurant #1 closed after the festival to allow the construction people finish some cosmetic issues. We finished the Life/Safety and Health Dept. issues before the festival and opened with shelving and painting needing to be finished.
When you are in COL, stop buy. The owner(s) are great. Forget the national chains. Support local business. Ask the staff about the bar top. It has history. While I am thinking about it, YOUR DAILY FIBER is locally owned. Buy yarn!!
Restaurant #2 is/was a bigger deal. It had a more complicated kitchen. Pieces and parts did not arrive in time to get it open before the festival. The walk-in cooler didn’t arrive. When the cooler arrived; it didn’t have a motor. Who would have guessed a rice cooker and a microwave could have caused so many problems? It seemed like every time I walked into the restaurant kitchen the rice cooker and the microwave had switched places, meaning we needed to move the fire suppression. I got so interesting (bad) the fire suppression installer became angry and started to go home. Lucky for me, I am in reasonable shape and was able to chase him down the street to ask him to come back to work.
In the past two weeks I have walked more miles (Oh boy, here I go again!) than hours I have slept. I was a recipient of an email that reminded me that “many” of the restaurant employees, who live paycheck to paycheck, are not working because I/we can’t get the restaurant open. Would anyone like to talk about stress in the workplace? Some of you might have noticed I was reading Spacebook at three in the morning. I was trying to get my mind off, “just how many times can we move the plug for the microwave?”
The weather has been cold. The heater in my truck has been broken. I have been driving to work wearing everything I own. My employer found out and said, “Why don’t you get it fixed?” My answer, “When?”
Restaurant #2 is open. Stop by, have a drink and a meal. The restaurant is locally owned, sort of. Try something with rice and think about that (construction language) cooker.
Our crazy lives!