If you remember, a year and a half ago we had an idea. I quit my job and went to work for a local restaurant. I posted updates about the job on another little blog, but then I stopped posting. Here’s what happened:

I went to work for this restaurant chain last summer. I worked a ton and by early spring I had been promoted to General Manager. I was getting exactly the experience we had hoped I would. Our store was doing well and I was relatively successful at what I was doing. Things changed in the early fall though when my bosses started putting increasing pressure on me to work more and more hours to compensate for the business we were losing because of the recession. I ended up working 70 to 80 hours a week, sometimes for weeks straight without a day off. Also, as I moved my way up in the ranks of the company I was being asked to do some things I could not, in good conscience, do. My employer was wanting me to overlook issues of harassment, terminate employees for unjust reasons and fabricate paperwork for incidents that didn’t happen in order to deny folks unemployment.

So, I quit. I put my notice in on Halloween. I figured that with experience as a General Manager on my resume I would have no trouble finding some kind of management job in Roanoke. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. I guess with unemployment being as high as it is and restaurants trying to weather the holidays, no one was hiring. I eventually did find a job with a very well known local restaurant (that is being featured in Southern Living magazine next month actually), but just as a cook and making no where near the money we needed to live. I continued to hunt for a job and Gretchen and I sort of went back to the drawing board in terms of our future plans. I had accomplished the goal we set when I left my old job to work in a restaurant, but I was also under-employed and our financial situation was looking bleak.

The job I left when we decided to pursue restaurant work was with a hospice. I was the Volunteer Coordinator and I picked up some of the Chaplain’s duties when he was overwhelmed. Evidently my old boss heard that I was looking for work and he contacted me and offered me a job as a Chaplain (believe it or not, I am actually a licensed Southern Baptist minister). I took the Chaplain job, which pays significantly more than the cook job. Even though I think I’ll miss being in the kitchen, I really do love hospice and I’m happy to be getting paid to do ministry.

And here we are. I’m a hospice Chaplain and we’re considering where to from here.

Here’s the only existing photo of me as a General Manager. I’m wearing an Optimus Prime helmet and doing the robot.

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