From the Other Side

Despite having 6 jobs in 2015, I did shockingly well in the getting holidays off from work department. Sure, I worked on New Year’s day, MLK Day, President’s Day and Easter. But I was teaching skiing, and have been for half my life (14 years) so I’m used to that. I worked on the 4th of July but I was rock climbing on Jockey Cap with summer camp, so I’m not sure how much that qualifies as “work,” except I was getting paid. Like I said, I did well- I had Thanksgiving, Christmas 2015 off and most recently in 2016, New Year’s Day.

We spent New Year’s eve (after I left work) in Burlington. Our first stop was to pick up a pizza at Leonardo’s, where they were running 15 minutes behind schedule and all the employees looked absolutely frantic. When the guy at the counter told me it’d be delayed, I told him no worries, it sure looked busy. I didn’t tell him this, but when our ski school check-in line gets long on a holiday, I know exactly how he feels.

He responded to my comment that it looked busy  by telling me he’d worked with kids all day and he was working a double. I wanted to give him a hug and say, I know, I worked with kids all day, too. I’ve worked doubles, I’ve worked holidays. I know.

I didn’t say a thing though, because I was not working a double on a holiday. I had worked all day with kids and now I got to sit down and eat pizza, while he worked all day and is still working.

Sitting, waiting for my pizza and watching the workers’ franticness (the kitchen is very open and the delivery drivers were coming and going) felt strange.

Over the past week between Christmas and New Years, I was the one working frantically while many others had time off. And working frantically because others had time off.

I felt strong empathy towards these guys and also a little bit guilty. I wasn’t working. And I know how much it sucks to be working when many of your family and friends aren’t.

When I saw the housekeepers in the hall of our hotel the next morning, I similarly wanted to give them a hug. I was sure following such a festive night they’d have some gross rooms to clean. Meanwhile, I was enjoying my day.

While I decided against giving hugs in both instances, I figured I’d at least leave a good tip. (Though my husband talked me down from a 20% tip in the hotel; I apparently only am knowledgeable of tipping etiquette in restaurants).

To everyone who worked on a holiday to my benefit: Thank You. Someday I hope I can return the favor.



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