Mar 28, 2007

Operating A School Canteen

I don’t know how to cook, and I’ve never even gone to a market place all by myself, so when my boyfriend and I were awarded the operation of a school canteen, everyone, including myself, was shocked … stunned… astonished. Sure, it was something we hoped for, but never really expected, considering that we submitted our bid at the last minute. Pressed for time, we couldn’t anymore afford such formalities as computer print-outs and the like.

But heaven must be on our side and we couldn’t be more thankful.

The first year was a period of adjustment --- testing the waters and riding the waves. We hired a great cook and three other personnel to keep the business running while we are attending to our day jobs.

It was no easy job, really, as we had to learn a lot about recording sales, conducting inventories, dealing with irate customers and kids with differing personalities, and all that. But, altogether, it was an enjoyable experience, so much so that we renewed our contract the following year.

The second year ran more smoothly. But times were a lot harder, and the profit we made was only enough to pay the rent, electricity bills, and salaries of our personnel. Sometimes, I would wonder if it’s all worth it, counting coins, instead of bills. Then I’d think about the people who work for us, and I know we’d just have to bid again.

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