I enter through the back door and am greeted by the sight of three cooks working on various orders and meals already prepared for the servers. The sounds of food cooking on the grill mesh together with the latest rap music blaring profane language from a nearby Bluetooth speaker.
The manager is busy with another order, but stops to greet me and take my temperature. I wonder when temperature taking will stop becoming a routine thing at the start of work. Perhaps when the coronavirus isn’t around anymore, I murmured to myself.
After taking a much needed bathroom break, I began organizing and setting up my dish station. Hot soapy water fills one sink and pinkish sanitizer fills another as the dish machine roars alive with washing and sanitizing the current load of dishes. Sometimes the dishes come out spotless, others need an extra wipe down from my towel. The ones with the stickiest food debris are dumped into the soapy water for mandatory soaking and scrubbing.
My right sock starts to feel wet again. I glance down and noticed the dirty water has flooded the dish pit floor. I sigh and grab a nearby wet broom to sweep it all into the debris-littered drain. I make a mental note to clean the drain once I’m caught up on dishes.
The ticket machine springs to life with yet another order and I decide that it’s the right time for a bite to eat. After placing and receiving my order, I savor both tacos outside on one of the old wooden chairs. A stray cat passes and I try to get its attention, but it merely walks away. So much for having some company.
Hours pass and it’s time to clock out. I’m annoyed that I have to keep requesting the manager to clock me out, but what can I do about it? Either way, I’m relieved and I exit through the back door to the car’s location, my feet sore and my energy low. Time for some rest.