I work in the Hotel Management Industry. Currently we have important guests visiting. These gentlemen are visiting us as they are interested in employing us to run one of their hotels. They are visiting 2 hotels that we currently manage and are meeting our executive team.
My day starts off well, I get in on time and all is running smoothly. At 10h30 I am asked to organise a platter and some salads for lunch for our guests and the execs at 12h15. Even though they need to be pre-ordered the day before, I manage to find someone who will make it up for me today.
So I leave over an hour before I need to collect the platter to get some additional items, decent serviettes etc. As I leave the office I hit standstill traffic. A road block! The police have pushed everyone into one lane and we are barely moving. Finally I get through it and I am off!
As I am approaching the traffic light, it turns orange. Now I am practically on top of it so I make that split second decision to go through the light. The guy in front of me has a different idea and comes to a dead stop. Now the speed limit on this road is 80km/h, to which I am adhering! Another split second decision and I hit the brakes with everything I have got, but it’s not enough! I am still going to hit him! So I turn slightly to the right in the hope that I will miss him. There is a car turning right and I need to miss him too! So amidst screeching brakes I miraculously ‘park’ between the 2 cars!
All I can smell is burning rubber and I have literally made my own lane between the cars. I didn’t even touch either car! Now in true Joburg style, both of the other drivers just stare at me. I calmly back up and get back behind ‘Mr. Goody two-shoes’.
By the time I get to the shops I am shaking and wobbly. I check my tyres to make sure they’re alright and I see that I have a screw embedded in one of my tyres. Great… But I don’t have time for this shit, so I just push on and just try to get on with it. By the time I have finished the shop I have stopped shaking and I jump in the car and off I go to collect the platter.
I park and launch out of the car, walk into the store and briskly ask for the platter. I look at my watch and I realise I am JUST going to make it back on time! Then the look on the man’s face makes my stomach turn. ‘What platter?’ he says. I tell him what I have organised and with whom and his blank stare does not make me feel any better.
The 3rd time he comes back to me I ask him ‘what branch is this?’ At his answer a sense of panic starts to rapidly creep over me. I am at the wrong branch! The correct branch is not far away but I am running out of time!
I drill into my car, nervous now of every single traffic light and I get to the shopping centre. It is pay day week at lunch time – there is literally no parking! I eventually park 3 floors underground. The shopping centre is huge and I have no idea where the shop is!
I message my boss that I am running late. He messages back ‘Take your time, we are still in meetings.’ I pull myself back from the brink of tears that has almost engulfed me and realise, I can still do this!
I still need to move it though, and in my 3 inch heels I start to literally run through the centre as if I am being chased. I ask for directions a few times and eventually I find it!
Breathing like a heavy smoker, I ask for the platter. The gentleman goes to fetch it so I take the opportunity to pick out the salads that I need. I finish and… I wait. After asking 3 people where the platter is, I realise that it is not ready! I am half an hour late to collect it and it should have been eaten by now, and it’s NOT READY!!
Again, the colour drains from my face – I try to remain calm. Finally the platter arrives and it’s 12h30. Now, I look ridiculous with salads hanging from one arm, balancing a platter on the other hand and running through the centre.
I get to the parking machine and realise I do not have a free hand. I try and make do and my watch falls off. Swear words emit from my mouth in a long string until I put the watch in my mouth. I finally find money the machine will actually take, get into the car and I am home free!
I get into the office’s basement parking and whilst balancing all said items, scan myself in and climb the 4 flights of stairs into the office.
They are still BUSY in meetings! My friends see how stressed out I am and all pitch in to help set everything up. As I sit down my boss says they are ready, please may I bring the lunch.
Hahahaha! What a shit day, BUT it all turned out ok.
BONUS – I did not embarrass the company in front of our guests or get my ass fired…!