Friday, February 15, 2008

What. A. Day.

It's been a big 24 hours.

In the last 24 hours, I have been:

- Early for work
- Late for work
- Employed
- Unemployed
- Re-employed
- Confused
- Worried / Panicked
- Giggley / Bordering on hysterical
- Hopeful

What the hell, huh?

This morning (well, actually yesterday morning since it's 1 a.m.) I rocked up for work at 8:45 a.m., thinking that my start time was 9. I got there to find that Heather had already set up the kiosk, and I went "Hmm ... That's strange. I thought that was my job today!" However, Heather was the one going "Hmmm" when she spotted me, because I wasn't meant to be at work until 10. Oops.
So home I went for an hour.
However, once I got home, I started reading a book, and got distracted and totally lost track of time. Looked at the clock ... "Oh shit! It's 9:40!"
So after being early for work, I was then late. Only just, though.

Like I said yesterday, things haven't been going well for the business at work. Heather has been under a lot of stress, and has been talking about trying to get out of the lease for the kiosk. She would keep the cafe, but close the kiosk down. I had talked her though, and she had assured me that if the kiosk closed down, I'd have a job in the cafe or their other business in Bendigo.

Today, everything sort of fell to hell, went to pieces and ... Well, it was shit.

About 11 a.m., Heather came over to tell me that Nick (the actual owner of the cafe - Heather rents it from him) had taken the cafe back. Heather had gone to Nick, and told him that she needed a little extra time to pay the lease this month. His response? "Get out of the cafe by the end of the month". Added to that? "There's no way you're getting out the kiosk lease".

Heather came over, in tears, to tell me that she couldn't afford to keep me on. She was so upset. She told me that her only option was to work in the kiosk by herself, to try and make some money, with the view of selling it soon.

She also told me that although she had said I could work at the other business that that wouldn't be possible. Heather and her husband, Frank, had actually already told two other girls this morning (from the other business) that they couldn't afford to keep them on. The cafe and the kiosk (the kiosk especially) have both been doing so badly that we have been losing a lot of money, so much that Heather and Frank have seriously considered selling their house to keep the cafe and the kiosk afloat. (It's not just the cafe and the kiosk that are not going well, by the way - the whole centre has been very quiet, and at least 4 other businesses there are in serious trouble.)

So ...

Hello, unemployment.

At first, I was concerned, (how am I going to pay rent, bills, buy food, how the hell am I going to get another job, what's going to happen now?) but I was more worried about Heather. She was devastated, and kept apologising. I know that this isn't her fault. I honestly believe this is Nick's work. He has wanted the cafe back for months, and has made no secret of that. He's made things difficult at every turn for us, and he is a utter bastard. Heather is working her arse off to try and keep afloat, and I know that this has been hell for her for months. She's been trying to put this off for as long as possible, because she was worried about us (her employees), and I guess something had to break.

However, after the afternoon went on, I started to panic a little.

Then, about 4 p.m., Heather had a meeting with Nick. He had decided to sit down and talk to her, and try and work something out. Whilst he was unwilling to give back the cafe (meaning 4 girls from the cafe are still out of work), he was willing to move the kiosk into a shop, at no cost to Heather. We have two vacant shops at the Market Centre, and it appears we will be moving into one of them.

So, immediately after Heather and Nick had their chat, Heather came to me, and told me all that had happened. If this goes ahead - if we do move into a shop - I will not lose my job. We'd move the kiosk into a shop, which would mean we could continue doing the food etc. we were doing the cafe, because we would have the room. In the kiosk, we currently do milkshakes, juices, hot drinks, gelati, cakes/slices/muffins. If we moved into a shop, we would have the room to do the cafe food, such as sandwhiches, rolls, hot food - fried food, chicken packs and proper meals - etc.

I say *if*, because I refuse to get my hopes up yet. I know Nick. He is, to be perfectly honest, a ruthless arsehole. His needs come first, screw everyone else. I want so much for this to come through - for Heather - because if this works out it would be a huge weight off her shoulders - for me, and for the girls in the cafe, because then we wouldn't lose our jobs, but right now? It's a wait and see game.

So, right now, it's 1:45 a.m. I'm still awake, because my damn brain won't switch off. Everything is a mess inside my head. Heather and I had another chat before I left, and by that stage I was just so confused, and I had gone really quiet. I was just trying to get things straight in my head, I guess. She asked if I was ok, (for about the thirtieth time today :-)) and I had to say "I really don't know. I don't know what to think".

I don't think this will resolve quickly. Today, I honestly thought that Saturday would be my last shift at work. But now, I don't know what's going to happen next week.

Anyway, I have to be up for work in 5 hours, so I better try to get some sleep. Peace out, guys.

No comments: