A series of anecdotes with or without any connection to the running of a restaurant.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Carpe Diem...

I have decided to take my holiday after all!

Karen's childhood friend and her husband are going with us. They went with us last year for a week and everything was great so we decided to make it two weeks this time and visit Barcelona. We had booked our cheap flights long before the idea of Casa was even conceived.

Even before we opened Casa del Mar, I was really in two minds about taking the holiday.
I knew that Kevin needed a right-hand man and up to ten days ago, I was that guy. After his initiation to Spanish food, I kept checking his Paellas, Cocidos, etc... and he gradually got to make them exactly the way I showed him. His speed improved with every passing day.
Initially I had explained that I'd be working with him for around three months.
Ten days ago, I offered one of our young part time chefs, Craig the position of full time second at Casa and he accepted. All Kevin and I needed was to introduce him to Spanish stuff. On Thursday, Kevin, Adam and I sat down at around 10pm to a selection of tapas prepared by Craig. He passed with flying colours!
It was only then that I finally made up about taking the holiday and letting them get on with it.
I came out of the kitchen yesterday, helped Adam on the floor by introducing a few minor improvements to the service and we ended up feeding close to 100 people.
I now feel ok about going away because I am 100% confident that Adam, Kevin and their young team will do very well.
Another reason that helped me decide was Eric's sad departure. Life is definitely not a rehearsal.
Yesterday, at his funeral in a small village church nearby, the whole population turned up as well as his friends and customers.

Carpe Diem!


Blogger Caroline said...

You are right to life your life to the full. And it sounds like you've got good people in place.

barcelona - sounds like fun - will you be going out into the countryside as well as the city?

18/2/06 2:16 PM  
Blogger Brian the Mennonite said...

It's great to see a plan come together. You are fortunate, Cream, to have such a good team.
This is as it should be.

18/2/06 2:32 PM  
Blogger Guyana-Gyal said...

I like the way you teach your staff, let them learn, and give them the freedom to do it on their own too. That's how they get confident.

I wish more bosses, managers, would learn from you.

I hope you & Karen & friends thoroughly enjoy yourselves.

Cream, your hardworking ways really do inspire me.

18/2/06 5:51 PM  
Blogger juliana said...

Go out and have some fun. You deserve it. After all the hard work you put into Casa del Mar you should enjoy every second of this vacation.

18/2/06 6:44 PM  
Blogger Wendy said...

Have a great break Cream...eat, drink, be merry...and come back rested and raring to go.When are you off then?

18/2/06 6:54 PM  
Blogger cream said...

Caro, that's the only way to DO life really! Live it!

Brian, you have to have a good team! Without one it is imposssible to do anything!

Gigi, I do try to do it properly and even if it fails every now and then, the result is ok in the long run!

Juliana, I am going to enjoy every minute, I can assure you!

Wendy, work is hard only if you don't enjoy what you're doing!
I am off from Monday and will celebrate my 53rd while I'm away!
Gee, I'm getting old!

19/2/06 3:50 AM  
Blogger cream said...

Wendy, off the Costa Blanca! A touch warmer than North East England!

19/2/06 11:03 AM  
Blogger ValGalArt said...

beautiful epiphany and post Cream! you are so right. It's nice to be able to travel with people that are easy to be with too! Time seems so accelarated, an important reminder to live, live, live!!!

19/2/06 9:14 PM  
Blogger Hayden said...

I'm glad you and Karen are going. There is never more than one shot at "today" - glad you're going to be enjoying yourself!

19/2/06 9:25 PM  
Blogger carla said...

How wonderful that you were able to put all the pieces together! A holiday sounds like a great idea, and I do agree that it is good to just stop putting things off. Now...I think I will need to take my own advice... Enjoy your holiday:>

20/2/06 12:54 AM  
Blogger euro-trac said...

I expect you're on holiday by now! Hope you have a good one...
and HAPPY BIRTHDAY too! :-)

20/2/06 5:05 PM  
Blogger DCveR said...

Enjoy your well deserved holiday and have a great birthday!

20/2/06 9:28 PM  
Blogger Ale said...

cream you're such a slaaacker! ;)
hah jk! have fun!

21/2/06 10:24 PM  
Blogger Kingston Girl said...

Enjoy your holiday - I love that area of Spain! And I'm sure you'll come back with some great new food ideas! Just show us some photos / drawings of your break so we can all be envious.

22/2/06 2:19 PM  
Blogger Guyana-Gyal said...

And happy birthday you young boy you.

22/2/06 8:34 PM  
Blogger The Tart said...

Thought I would check in on you.
A HOLIDAY! Great, enjoy and bring us back some stories & photos!

The Tart

26/2/06 7:37 PM  

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