I’m moving to LA in February. All the way across the Pacific Ocean to the city, to another country.
But before getting to that point, I finished up my high flying, high paying marketing job and went to the Kimberley in remote north western Australia for a holiday and came home doing various bits and pieces to essentially bide my time.
One such random opportunity that presented itself was waitressing. I have never waitressed before. I somehow managed to get to my thirties without having worked at the hospitality coal-face. I have had plenty of experience on the other side of the plate but making the trips between kitchen and table was a whole other world. A whole other world of scary.
My foray into the world of carrying plates, taking orders and smiling sweetly to customers has come about because I want to overcome the fear I had, and I want to challenge myself.
The thing I notice most clearly are during those pre and post shift walks down the main restaurant strip to and from the restaurant. Here are all these others, people I’d never really noticed before, in their head to toe black uniforms. Suddenly I am catapaulted into a whole new world where flat shoes reign and aprons are standard attire. I am one of them, I am a waitress.
I don’t hold back the urge to smile and nod knowingly to these people in the street setting up or clearing away tables. These are the people who’ve seen it all. They’ve been run off their feet as they juggle plates, egos and customers. They scrape plates and set tables. And once they start a shift they don’t stop running.
So as I savour the time honoured hospitality tradition of a knock off drink, I feel like I’ve been initiated into a secret new world. Thank you for coming, I hope you enjoyed your evening.