United States

Cooking in Newark

November 19, 2019

    “Hurry up!” yelled Diane. Diane was the kitchen supervisor at the restaurant that I worked at. “The people outside are getting impatient.” I was one of the chefs at a restaurant called Newark Fresh, located in a small suburban city in Delaware called Newark. I had moved to Newark about 7 years ago from Sacramento, California. Sacramento was a very big city, so you can imagine how different it was for me coming to Newark. My name is Ashlyn, and I’m 28 years old. I started working at Newark fresh shortly after I moved to Newark. I went to culinary school in Sacramento for two years, graduated, then moved here and started work.
    I finished the vegetable soup, and carried the bowl over to Diane to prepare for the guests. “Finally, you finished.” she said. “It took you long enough.” Diane was probably my least favorite employee from this restaurant. She was always set on impressing the manager, Kody. When I started working here, I made a killer lemon meringue pie that Kody loved. Ever since, Diane has given me a rotten vibe. It seems like a stupid reason for someone to hate a person to me, but I guess I can’t change Diane’s thoughts. I've been trying to block out Diane’s rude comments  towards me and be the best that I can be, without listening to her point out every tiny mistake I make. 
    At the end of the day we all packed up our belongings, and cleaned up the kitchen for tomorrow. Kody walked out of his office and said, “Can I please see Ashlyn in my office.” As he walked back into his office, I saw Diane give me a suspicious look. I went into his office and shut the door. He motions me over, and I sat down in the seat in front of his desk, I get a little nervous as he looks at me. “Ashlyn” he said. “I would just like to say that we had a food critic come into the restaurant earlier today. She ordered the vegetable soup off the menu, and had the lemon meringue pie for dessert.” I didn’t actually know where he was going, so I just sat back and waited for him to speak again. He picked up a paper packet from his desk and handed it to me. I opened it up and read the headline on the second page that said, “Newark Fresh Review”. I skimmed through it and it seemed that the critic liked her meal. 
    As I looked up at him, I saw a smile on his face. I smiled back and said, “Sir, this is great, but what does it have to do with me?” Kody laughed and said, “Well, it comes to my understanding that you made the vegetable soup, and the lemon meringue pie.” I wasn’t quite sure what to say next, so I waited for him to speak again. “Ashlyn, you have bumped up our rating to a 98, just from your impressive soup and pie!” I smiled at him again, then he said, “I would like to promote you to the position of head chef.” I looked at him with amazement, and replied, “I would be honored!”
    As I left the restaurant, I looked at the restaurant quality letter grade sign to the left of the entrance that said 98. I couldn’t help but laugh to myself. I was so surprised. I wondered to myself if tomorrow would feel any different than all the previous days working there. As I rode my bike home, I reviewed what just happened to me in Kody’s office. When I walked in that morning, I had no idea the opportunity that was going to be given to me later the same day.    
    The next morning, I walked into the restaurant to start my first day on the new position. Just walking into the building gave me goosebumps, knowing that I had a more important role in the kitchen. As I walked to the employee closet to put my bags and coat away, I passed a couple of my fellow workers. They said things to me like, “Congratulations!” and “Great Job!” I had no idea how they all found out about my promotion, but that meant that Diane would know about it as well. Well that’s great. At least I have some joy coming my way. As I exited the closet, sure enough, Diane was standing a few feet past the door. I looked her in the eye and said “Good morning, Diane”. I've decided that she wasn’t going to make my day miserable. I’d just have to work my best, and be nice to her so that she doesn’t get the best of me. 


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  • November 19, 2019 - 11:48am (Now Viewing)

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