A couple of weeks back I was at ISPO Munich..I had no intention of going, preferring to conserve my energy here as things in all areas seemed to have come to shove..however, with Principals changing like musical chairs, felt it was best to keep in touch 😦
On the 2nd day of the show, I felt a little off colour, I mean the trains were so packed and not well ventilated and so many coughs and sniffles going on all around me…it was a miracle I did not fall prey any sooner. I mean, here I was, whisked from tropical monsoon to the depths of winter. Besides, I had meetings scheduled on 1st 2 days at 8am (which meant, up at 5am…dress, eat, train etc to get there by 8..sigh) Then, I had this craving for rice and chinese food, so I shared this EU18.50 lunch of rice with stir fried beef and stir fried vegetables with my colleague..I thought the oil smelt a little rancid (upon coming home I complained to my mum, who is home cook extraordinaire…she nodded sagely and said..well..to cut cost they re-used oil previously used for deep-frying and my sensitive taste buds-certainly not used to bad food- detected it and my stomach just groaned…PLEASE..you don’t want those bad food calories added onto your waistline do you??!!)
Well anyhow, when lunch was over, I felt I was about to collapse OR fall asleep so I desperately asked my colleague, look me a nice quiet place as I really have to sit down and rest!
So, we went to this bar at the entrance of B Exit (she claimed she had been eyeing it)…fairly quiet, pre-lunch crowd. We bought a couple of drinks, I put my legs up on my trolley bag and then tried to sleep..
Well, before I got there, I noticed the bar/cafe was run by this one old lady..she looked about 65? Hair very neatly done up, face all done up very nicely, quick of movement..bustling about, then I fell asleep..intermittenly..
In between my stupor, I noticed this crazy cute lady was running the whole place on her own, ya sure it was just a drink and sandwich place but I noticed the stream of customers was non stop, not crazy intense, but was at a constant flow…at one high point of lunch, all 30 tables were occupied.then it waned again. But, she was like taking orders, heating up sandwiches, taking payment, when there was a sudden lull, she would be replenishing her display of sandwiches and a quick run out to clear the tables..and bearing the trays into the kitchen within!!! At certain moments, I heard her yelling ciabatta!! pannini!!..so funny..getting the folks to come back to counter to collect their stuff. At one point a man badgered her and she said, please wait..I am alone.
There was a section for tray returns, but I noticed the only people that brought back their used stuff there were 2 ladies (and us of course), the rest, well..don’t know or don’t care?
The point is, I was there for 2 hours or so, she neither paused, rest, was extremely professional..her movement was brisk, energetic..well..she simply just blew me away!
And you know what? To top it off, she spoke English, German, Spainish, French?! (Mandarin maybe..if I waited long enough!). We are talking…having a conversation with patrons here, not your cursory statements…hello!! Talking about work rate, this lady will put many of us to shame!
And when I was ready to move on to my next appointment, my colleague returned our stuff back to the tray returns, she looked up and thanked her for putting the trays back, in German, (I think she caught us staring at her like 2 transfixed cats?) – remembering that through all those throngs of crowds, that we spoke to her in German to get our orders! And how do you beat that?
As for the bad food, my stomach really protested and I emptied it out on way back. twice..but…that is yet another story 🙂