After the crazies of trying to coordinate a time to meet with Chef, and more than a little anxiety over how to phrase my question, I finally sat down with him today at the British gastropub (let’s call it BG for now).
I was a little early, so I stood around observing the kitchen for a few minutes while my connection went to find him. The kitchen is huge with so many moving parts. I was nervous and excited at the prospect of being a part of it. FInally, the Chef emerged.
He seemed very busy, so I cut to the chase. I told him that I really want to get into the restaurant industry and I asked him if he was willing and/or able to take me on as a stage one day a week.
And guess what?
He said yes.
Well, he said “if that’s what you really want to do, then sure! You’re welcome to hang out with us [in the kitchen].” It felt like a huge weight was lifted from my shoulders.
He started to explain that the hours are long (12-hour shifts!) with a lot of hard work involved. I told him that I was prepared with my food handler/manager certificate and that I had even bought the right shoes. He chuckled at that last part and remarked, “I hope those non skid shoes are comfortable!” He asked when I could start and we agreed that I would come in this Saturday for my first ever shift.
He also said something else that was interesting and that I will have to remember when times get tough. When I started to ask him if I could stage, I mentioned nervously that I had never worked in a professional kitchen before and he calmly replied, “Well, none of us had when we first started out, so you have to keep that in mind.”
So. I start Saturday… and I can hardly contain my excitement! Every job I’ve held so far has been a cushy desk job, sitting in front of a computer in an air conditioned office (well, except for my high school stint at Forever 21 – but let’s not talk about that). And now I’ve gotten this incredible opportunity to stage at my first choice restaurant.
This is going to be so different but different is exciting. And terrifying. Very terrifying.
T minus 3 days.