I started this post a long time ago… on May 30, to be exact. I just didn’t get around to finishing it until tonight. So here you go. Some of my favourite moments at Hillcrest. I wish that I could have written down every single thing that everyone said, because it was all so weird or funny or entertaining or interesting.
Tomorrow is my last day of work at Hillcrest.
It really is. I can hardly believe it. 11 months of my life. Today, when I was saying goodbye to Alice, because it was the last time that I would work with her, she said, “Yes, life is full of twists and turns.” I said, “Well, this was a really good twist.” And I really did mean it.
This past week has been so full of mixed feelings…. one moment I cannot wait to be done there, and the next moment, I feel like I never want to leave. The girl who is going to be taking my place has been around this week, and I trained her how to be me. I didn’t want to like her… because some juvenile part of me doesn’t like the thought of anyone taking my place, and I hate the thought of becoming just another worker who passed through Hillcrest. Many workers have passed through Hillcrest. Anyways, the new girl is nice. She will do a good job of being me. Florence is happy because Margaret is tall like I am tall (taller, in fact) and so she will still have someone to reach all the things that are too high for her. I was always the one who got lids for her pails of pie filling for her. I got the box of coconut off the shelf for her. I got brown sugar for her. But Margaret will be able to do all those things for Florence, and I’m glad to know that there is someone there to take care of her. Because Florence honestly needs taking care of. She is a little bit accident prone.
Anyways… I planned on making my last week at Hillcrest perfect and happy. What I did not count on was how sad I would feel during my last four days of work. It’s hard to be happy when you’re feeling sad. It is. It’s hard to act happy. And it doesn’t help that we talk constantly about me leaving. And my mind… it is not on the work. I have made so many stupid mistakes. On Tuesday, I forgot to put yeast in a batch of dough. Alice put on her “did you forget the yeast?” face, and there was some debate as to whether it was me or Eva who forgot the yeast, but I felt somewhere deep within my soul that it was me. And it bugged me so much, because I inwardly vowed that I wasn’t going to be like all those other workers who left. I’ve seen what happens to girls who are finishing up at Hillcrest. They oversleep. They burn things. They are absent-minded, and make silly mistakes. And I was not going to be one of them. But somehow, I ended up being one of them. But anyways… they all teased me about forgetting the yeast, and that was fine… I could handle that. But then, a few minutes after, I was working alone in a different room, and Florence came back and said, “We really are going to miss you, Jasmine.” And then I felt like crying, and like I just did not want to leave.
So tonight, I am going to post some of my favourite quotes and memories, and then I’m going to shut down my computer and write a few thank you notes to some of the most special people, and then I’m going to go to bed, and wake up early and bike to Hillcrest one last time. I’m hoping that it’s one of those beautiful summer mornings, when the sky is a beautiful shade of blue and getting lighter by the second, and the birds are awake, and I don’t feel like I am the only living soul in Floradale.
Hillcrest Memories and Quotes- These may be funny only to me. I am fully aware of that. Some of them aren’t even funny. They’re just things that I never want to forget.
- “Such is life. We’ve survived it so far, I guess.” -Florence
- That time that Oscar died, and customer joined in our conversation, and Sarah laughed so hard that she could not even stand up.
- “It’s burning! It’s burning! … It’s not burning.” -me. I was telling Amber a story while I was waiting for something on the stove to heat up, and just as I got to the “It’s burning! It’s burning!” part, Cheryl (one of the bosses) walked around the corner, and just looked so concerned. So I added the last part.
- The time that we ran out of eggs, and were discussing what we should do, and Florence randomly oinked. Cause when you’re talking about chickens… you should oink. Obviously.
- The time that Florence tried to convince me that I said “Ow”. She thought I said “ow”. I still firmly believe that I did not say it. Isn’t that annoying? When you’re so sure of something, and you are right and the other person is wrong, but they just won’t belie ve you? That was as close to arguing as Florence and I ever got.
- One time, I was carefully walking with a very full measuring cup of sunflower seeds, and Florence walked around the corner, and straight into me, and some of my sunflower seeds went flying. So Florence and I were looking down at the floor, seriously discussing if there were enough seeds on the floor to be swept up, or if I should just leave them, and Earla walked around the corner and said, “What are you looking for? Your marbles?” With me and Florence… it’s actually a legit question.
- The time Amber dumped juice powder in her water bottle, and put the cap on so that she could shake it (to mix the water and the powder), except that the cap wasn’t on right, and red juice sprayed everywhere.
- The time Amber tried to mix dough without the dough hook. That was a funny time.
- The time Florence tried to mash a lot of bananas at once in the mixer, and they sprayed everywhere. That was a mess and a half.
- “I want the biggest long john! With lots of icing!” -Sarah
- “Pineapple juice- it’s good for the soul. Like chicken soup.” -Florence
- The time that Sarah used icing sugar instead of flour in the bread dough… on Valentine’s Day. We made lots of jokes about how she was thinking sweet thoughts. It was just fun to tease her, because she had just started dating.
- “I heard that he walked her to and from church.” -Viola. Both to and from church? It must be a serious relationship.
- “Next thing you know, the grumble stones are gone!” -Florence. Grumble stones… now there’s a new one.
- “Here comes the bothersock.”
- The time that it looked like there was footprints on our countertop, and we accused Florence of dancing on the counter.
- The time that Sarah’s boyfriend came to Hillcrest, but didn’t want us to know that he was her boyfriend, and his friend tricked him into coming back to the bakery… but then he caught on what was happening, and made a quick escape. His friend Willard (without realizing that Ray wasn’t behind him anymore) literally jumped into the bakery, and was all excited and talking in German and poor Florence was so shocked, she just stood and looked at him. And then he turned around, fully expecting Ray to be behind him… and said (in English. lol) “Hey! Where’d he go?” But what was even better than that was the imitation of Willard that Florence did later. Truly amusing. But you kind of had to be there, I think.
- Those days before Thanksgiving where six or seven of us would stand at the counter rolling out pie crusts, after working 12 hour days, and we would talk so much and laugh so hard, and it was wonderful to come home feeling so tired and happy.
- The Friday mornings that me and Amber and Sarah would drink hot chocolate… those were great talks.
- “Yeah, what was wrong with us yesterday?” “I still think it was the altitude.” “Are you sure it wasn’t our attitudes?” “We don’t have attitude problems around here… we just have altitude problems.” That was me and Amber.
- The time Amber said she had penguin pjs, and I got all excited, because I do too, and then Amber said “I have two pairs of penguin pjs.” I couldn’t top that. She just said it so smugly.
- “It’s true! It said it in the Wellington Advisor!” -Amber. It’s actually called the Wellington Advertiser. Amber really ought to be more careful with where she goes for advice.
- “Sometimes, it’s nice to be confused.” -Florence
- “These were the best days of our lives.” -Florence again.
- All the Despicable Me jokes and quotes between me and Amber. She told her husband about our conversations, and how we wished that we had minions, and he told her that she was his minion and we just thought that was the sweetest thing ever.
- The time that Alice said, “And the peaches!” and then Amber said, “And the peaches!” and then I said, “And the peaches!” But mine was best because I said it in a British accent.
- “The word is out!” “What’s the word?” “… we’re missing one hot dog bun.” That was a bit of a letdown, to be honest.
- “The word is out! Alma is marrying a farmer!” -me. And then Alice poked her head around the corner and said, “Alma is marrying a farmer? This place just keeps getting interestinger!”
- “Today is today and tomorrow is tomorrow.” -Florence
- The time I put pecan pies in an oven to bake… except that the oven wasn’t turned on. So they, uh, didn’t bake. Yeah. That was embarrassing.
- “Get your mind out of the gutter, Viola.” -Florence. You wouldn’t think that a lady with name like Viola would have her mind in the gutter.
- The time I opened a box of tarts and was all indignant and annoyed because all the tart shells were upside down. Until Amber pointed out to me that I had opened the box at the bottom instead of top. Which explained why the shells were upside. Yeah.
- The time I was so excited about getting home and having a nap that I didn’t leave my bike in the garage like I normally do… I brought it all way into the basement with me. I was just so focused on getting inside that I didn’t even think about the fact that I wouldn’t have to awkwardly be lugging my bike through the second door with me.
- The time Florence told me that she guesses I’m worth waiting for. You kind of need to hear that in context to fully understand it… but it’s complicated.
- We were discussing how Solomon had so many wives and then we kind started talking about polygamy… and then Alma said, “Well, I’ll be lucky if I even get one husband!” And it made me laugh.
- The time Alma’s friend had a dream that Alma got married to a farmer named Tommy McGoat. We teased her about that for a loooooong time.
- Alma only remembers one thing from History class, and it is this: Back in the days when people were exploring the world… if they ever got lost or something, and starvation was inevitable… they always ate the fattest man first.
- “How ’bout it, Mama?” -Florence
- One morning Earla was using the mixer, and I was standing beside the mixer, and I could see that she was going straight from first gear to third gear. And I thought it was odd, because usually, we like to go to second before going to third, because third generally is kind of messy. And Earla got all annoyed at the mixer and said, “Well. I don’t know why they had to make such a difference between first and second gear. Second gear should not be this fast.” And I was like, “Yeah… see, you’re going straight from first to third. There is actually a second gear that works wonderfully.”
- Hearing Florence pick up phrases that I would say… She started to say things like, “Having a niece like that would freak me out” and “Something’s screwy about that”, and it made me laugh to hear it. I also picked up Old Order expressions as well. Such as “This loaf wants chocolate chips before it goes in the oven.”
- “My thinker is on the blinker.” -Florence
- One Friday Marlene had the cutest little girl come ask for a long john. So I told her that she had the cutest customer of the day. And she said, “Oh, last Friday I had one that was even cuter!” And I said, “cuter than that? Who was it?” And she said, “My husband!” Sweet, right? =)
Anyways… I loved working at Hillcrest. I really did. And I’m sorry about this long list of memories that probably don’t even make sense to the rest of you. But they sure make me feel warm and fuzzy inside. =)