Bank holidays always test our service provision to the limit as wave after wave of thirsty & hungry customers descend on us. No sooner has the queue in the boots bar been cleared when another has formed in the lounge snaking its way passed reception and out the front door.
Residents, passing visitors, seasoned veterans mixed with a generous helping of newbie’s eager to sample our unique atmosphere stand in line, mainly in good humour – well, they are on holiday after all.
The weather helped this year, fantastic hill days with dawn to dusk sunshine, dry as well & not a midgie in sight.
The frontline staff take it in their stride, drinks are dispensed with great alacrity & food orders for all the starving including groups of anywhere between 10 & 30 are dispatched faster than lightning. In the searing heat of the kitchen only the strong survive, these guys are like the SAS - only they don’t take prisoners. Orders are orders and you get what you asked for, timely, hot and don’t dare drop it on the way out.
There is no let up during food service and little relief when the last meals leave the kitchen. In here the chefs have to scrub down and plan the early start required to prepare everything from scratch all over again. Meanwhile through in the boots bar the music is about to start & the big clean up is in progress. Very soon dozens of trays laden with glasses, crockery & debris are added to the already groaning piles behind the scenes……spare a thought for the brave soul who has drawn the short straw, buried somewhere between the sink & the dishwasher.
Back at the frontline the multitude hammer the bar round after round. Ales are changed faster than ever and whisky flies off the shelf, meanwhile the band have the audience stomping their feet & clapping their hands as the clock ticks away on another epic night. Shelves are restocked, floors are swept & toilets are cleaned….who fancies that job? Whilst the chosen trustees are busy with the abacus others serve ‘one for the road’ to a few hardy residents.
In the morning the housekeeping team grit their teeth, they know why the dining room is not quite in the same state that it was left and quickly tidy up before serving up hearty breakfasts with a smile to all our residents, some carry rucksacks with packed lunches whilst others carry hangovers. At reception the dawn patrol bid farewell to our guests who report ‘a great night’, ‘a whale of a time’ and ‘we’ll be back’
To all our guests & customers: We thank you for your company and hope that somewhere amongst the chaos of the bank holiday weekend we managed to look after you.
To our staff: There are times when you test my patience with your shenanigans and you may feel that you are underpaid, undervalued and overworked however; The contribution, resilience & good humour that you all demonstrate under pressure & under strength time & time again is hugely appreciated.