Night Shift

Tonight was my second time working a dinner shift at the steakhouse. I worked the salad station which of course involves making the salads, but also the desserts and serving the soups. It was a good shift, busy enough to not be boring but never so busy as to be overwhelming.

I still like the job and find my coworkers pleasant to work with. I am glad they are giving me more hours. They told me when they hired me that they do performance based scheduling, so hopefully the fact that I’m getting more hours means my performance is good. I did get one complaint tonight that my ice cream balls needed to be rounder, but I got two compliments that my salads are pretty.

I do think I like working days better than nights though. Not only is it better for my family but I prefer the atmosphere and pace. During the day we have tons of prep work to do. We just go to the line when there are lots of orders. The rest of the time A, the main day line cook, takes care of the line while we prep. There is always plenty of work to do. If we finish the prep work and the line isn’t busy we can do dishes. If all that is done we get to go home. There is no standing around, no trying to figure out what to do to look busy. I like that.

But I must admit probably the main reason I like the day shift better is my coworkers. During the day most of the people working in the kitchen are Hispanic. A on the line, E doing protein prep and L doing salad prep are all Mexicanos. I like the music they play. I like the way they help each other out. I like that if they feel the need to do a few dance steps as they work they do. We don’t talk a lot, we are all focused on the work we need to get done, but when we do I like that too. Apparently I talk enough with them that two different people have asked me what my first language is.

Unfortunately there is a sense of separation between the staff depending on their culture. Both A and E have made comments about how their “paisanos” will support them differently than the American staff. They feel there is a difference in work ethic and teamwork. It is too early for me to have an opinion on whether or that perception is based on truth or prejudicial expectations or what. I am curious to see, but in the meantime I am thrilled to be able to feel at home with both. I hope I will be able to continue that.

Tomorrow is the beginning of Lent so I may have had too much sugar and alcohol in anticipation of 40 days without. I cannot seem to think of a way to end this post other than just saying good night. “Good night.”

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