Two weeks plus since graduation, and things have settled into a random pattern. I've discovered I have a knack for working under pressure, and I've concluded that I'd rather spend an entire shift on a slammed line than do an hour's prep.
The problem is I'm not getting the hours I need. This week and next are our busiest weeks of the summer, yet I'll be barely making 30-35 hours. That is more than during school, but it's still not enough. And the hours are spread out, often 3 or 4 hours a day for 5 days, followed by one full shift, and only one full day off. It doesn't help that the food I'm cooking does nothing to fire my passion. The straw that broke the camel's back was this coming weekend -- When I started the job I made clear that due to childcare limitations, I cannot work on Saturdays. But they scheduled ALL of us to work on every day of the 4th weekend, no exceptions, and missing a shift is a firing offense, called in or not.
I have been surprised to discover that my No Saturdays stipulation is not as much of a deal-breaker as I expected it to be. I discovered this because I spent all day yesterday canvassing the downtown Eugene area, as well as several outlying restaurants, dropping off resumes at at least 15 restaurants. I had 3 impromptu interviews, an on-the-spot appointment to come back for an interview, and had another call for an interview by 8:30 this morning. One of the impromptu interviews ended in a promise of a call, and another resulted in a call-back today. Of the two interviews today, one resulted in a promise of a call-back, and the other resulted in me being scheduled to work on a trial basis during the breakfast shift this coming Friday. I'm sure I'm going to get my ass kicked, especially since I'll be working 5:30 AM -- 2 PM, then going to my current job and working 5-11 PM. But I'm going to work that kicked ass off, and I'm going to get a better job -- better pay, better hours, and more importantly, BETTER CUISINE!
I really do love this work. A few days ago I ended up working solo during the lunch AND early dinner rushes because the other cook called in sick 15 minutes before shift. I was slammed, I was pissed, and I was HAVING THE TIME OF MY LIFE!!!!! As I worked, and stewed, and fought my way out of the weeds, I found myself smiling and thinking to myself, "at least I'm not at a desk anymore". I'm seriously better of emotionally doing this than I ever was answering tech support calls from pissy, computer-illiterate customers in a row of cubicles, while a supervisor stood at the end of the office, snapping a whip and shouting "Answer FASTER!" as a bald giant wearing nothing but a leather harness beat the rowing rhythm on a kettle drum.