Working on a Holiday

This morning I woke up, earlier than I would have liked, fed my turtles and dogs and went out front to scrape the ice off my car. This was followed by driving into the office and being one of the two people who were in the entire office. Which was eerie. My participation in Black Friday was limited to two books I just downloaded onto my Kindle.

So much has been said on how Black Friday is unfair to employees, because now Black Friday starts on Thursday! And that should be reserved for time with family and stores should not be open! Personally, I’ve only worked in retail for two weeks in my life. (It was a third job and it didn’t end up working out with my schedule with my other jobs). I’ve never worked a Black Friday, or even with the public over Christmas time. For which I am grateful, but that’s not what I want to write on this evening.

Wednesday evening I drove my mom to the grocery store. I was expecting chaos, and I was not disappointed. The lines were long as people were getting last minute items for their Thanksgiving celebrations. I stood in line and the check out lady greeted every single person with a genuine big smile, a ‘did you find everything you needed?’ and then, still with a genuine smile, ‘we’re open tomorrow if you’ve missed something! I always end up forgetting something.’ I have no idea if this lady was working on the holiday, but her cheerful attitude was the highlight of my otherwise stressful day.

Upon moving in December a few years ago, we ended up going to Shari’s for Christmas dinner. They had been so busy that they were running out of clean silverware. Every waitress and waiter we encountered, while very busy, treated everyone around them as if making sure they had a good Christmas was the most important part of their day. If anyone there that day had not wanted to be working on Christmas, they were doing an excellent job hiding it.

My grandpa had a stroke this week, and the normal Thanksgiving dinner that my grandma would have prepared did not happen. My immediate family couldn’t be there, but the normal gang ended up going out for Thanksgiving dinner.

I wanted to write to those of you out there who work on the holidays and say thank you. Thank you for greeting us with a smile, thank you for going out of your way to help us have a as-normal-as-possible Thanksgiving or Christmas.

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