Currently, as I gaze with half-opened eyes at my computer, I have been unemployed for two full days.
This isn’t because I was fired or the result of workforce downsizing, rather it simply was because an urge to take a break became greater than the motivation to keep earning money.
Until this past Wednesday, I was a server in a Sausalito restaurant called Napa Valley Burger Company and Thursday marked the final shift for my second job as bartender at a wine bar called Cellar Door.
Both experiences are ones that I will remember forever and I feel grateful to have had an opportunity to be a part of each work culture. Inside, despite not knowing exactly what I want out of life, it was evident that a change was needed. Somewhere between answering questions about our house Cabernet or helping a tourist decide which half-pound hamburger seemed appetizing for lunch, my heart has been craving something different.
A couple years ago it would have seemed silly to say that I’d ever be a bartender in San Francisco because I didn’t think it would be possible. No one has ever trusted me as fully as Kamran and Julie (my bosses) have, and being a member of their staff has been great. After 15 months of tending bar and managing their content for social media, I feel like there isn’t more I can give Cellar Door. It’s been an education not only in managing a bar, but also managing myself as a person. Lara, Ben, Kala, Enrique, Caralyn, Ryan, Emily, Kaitlyn, Vio, and Johnny have all been great co-workers, even if some of us only shared a single shift together. A big thank you to all of Cellar Door’s band of dating-app first daters is highly necessary as well. I hope that the great music, dim lighting, sometimes over pouring, has helped you find a future soul mate. You’re welcome and thank you for the 14% tip. This glass of Russian River Red Pinot is raised in your honor. Inside I know that this chapter in life is over, so walking away hasn’t been an easy decision. The bonds made here taste a lot better than the wine we served together.
Saying farewell to people from Napa Valley Burger Company feels equally as emotional, however there is a strong sensation that this isn’t the end. After five months of getting crushed during the tourist season of Sausalito I don’t feel ready to leave. With October approaching, the time of constant waves of business is starting to dwindle, and consistent shifts will soon be hard to come by. Considering that I haven’t paying rent (shout out to my lovely parents) it seems fair for me to throw in the work apron, at least temporarily.
A huge thank you to Sergio and especially Tom (the friend who hired me) is due. They have been excellent bosses, and more importantly truly great friends. Napa Burger has a staff of practically forty people, so listing each person by name might be excessive. The fellow servers, bartenders, cooks, bussers, food runners, hosts, and dishwashers are all hard-working people. Thank you for accepting me into your family and helping me develop as a hamburger mercenary. I previously didn’t know that it was possible to work as much or hard as some of these people do, and even though I’m just a guero, they will always be my brothers in food serving arms. We will always have the truffle fries, watermelon radishes, and also the memories. We also will have next summer!
It’s been two days since deciding on a temporary work hiatus. In three days I’ll be leaving home and spending the next handful of weeks up in Montana, Seattle, and Portland. In one month I’ll be back in Murcia, Spain for an unknown length of time.
I’m not sure why I keep coming back to Murcia. Maybe the wonderful people, cheap coffee, and delicious tapas keep sending me whatsapps. Maybe it’s because it feels like home. When I get there we can talk more about this 😉
Life is unpredictable and it’s impossible to know what will happen next. It feels good to simply be here, to be lucky enough to have this adventure getting closer, and to be your friend.
Thank you for reading this blog, if we haven’t met in person yet I hope that this changes one day. For all friends and family reading this, I love you and look forward to sharing more in future posts.
Hey Danny – Where did the time go? I wish that we had been able to work together a little more. You’ve definitely made a positive contribution at the restaurant and a lasting impression on all of our staff. Best of luck to you as you go forward!
Thank you Tom! It was great to be a part of it!