By Jennifer Welch
Summer never starts off with these words, “What do you want?” It begins on a much softer note. “Hi, what can I help you with today? What can I get for you? Is that all you would like?” Everyone in the service industry has the lines memorized by heart and, at least in the beginning, manages to even use them with customers. But towards the end of the season, when angry August rolls around, you just might let a ‘What do you want?’ slip from your lips … if only accidentally. It’s not that we hate our jobs by the end of summer, it’s that we loathe them. And, really, it’s not you, it’s us. The service industry is exhausting and gratifying at the same time and, generally speaking, the more exhausted you get, the more gratified you become. But at some point we just need to crawl into a hole and hibernate for the winter until the next tourist season rolls around and we are required to smile and talk to people again.
Here at the bus, summer is off to a great start. We are busier than we were last year and running a larger menu and a larger farm. We are also looking at adding more pasture land to our rotations which will allow us to continue to grow our herds and the food truck even more. We really didn’t know what to expect this summer, especially after last year’s fiasco. It’s hard to know when to quit and when to keep going and we were ready to hinge that decision on this year’s progress or lack thereof. So I am relieved to say that things are looking up so far. In hindsight, I might be willing to admit that taking two of the most demanding, failure-prone business models and smashing them together might have been a horrible idea. Maybe they were right, maybe you can’t do it all or have it all. These thoughts have been rumbling around in my head all spring and begging the question, “What do you want?”