Amelia – Chapter 8 – Air Force Reserve and Return

Amelia has been gone gone for 2 weeks because she serves in the Air Force Reserve 2 weeks a year.

On top of her working at the gym on the wrong side of Broad street, getting her certification in personal training, working for Uber in her off hours, and being my number one at the salon, she serves her country.

If you’ve been reading this series about our seasonal hires at the salon you’ve learned quite a bit.

Eileen is the baby, The lovely 18 year old with a steel trap mind, and a sharp wit. She’s lovely and great with the customers. I put her at the front and she’s magic. Eileen deflects all of the customer bullshit and is great at being the perfect actress/hostess to the clients. That’s what I want.

I normally do everything, and its good to know Eileen is my sweet anchor at the counter while I run around and clean beds and manage the laundry.

While Amelia’s been away for two weeks serving her country Eileen has been picking up all of her shifts and has been more than on point. I’m pleased beyond words with my current staff. They’re different but I adore them both and they have been so great this year. We’ve had so much trash roll through here that it’s refreshing to have some sweet young minds that are on point and come in and do the job properly. Achilles is oblivious and bitches about whatever we’ve missed in regard to cleaning, but it’s his ship and that’s his role.

He never sees how bad we get run over by clients. but we just keep hammering on and try to keep the place as clean and tidy as we can.

The air conditioning fails, and the beds overheat, and the system freezes, and we just march on. Tanning people that are ready to look the best they can for what they’re about to do. Weddings, formals, graduations, going down the shore, honeymoon, summer, and skin issues. We do it all and you will all look beautiful in the end. I promise.

I feel like Amelia and I have grown close over our time together. We reveal what’s happening in our lives.

I trust Amelia.

She’s not my hire but we’ve formed an incredible bond. I joke how Eileen is my hire but that’s all bullshit, and I am so pleased with them both.

But while Amelia was away for two weeks, I really missed her presence in my life.

Eileen picked up all of her shifts and was great. I loved working with Eileen and spending time with her at work and beyond. (We’ve had a lot of fun snacks after work together!)

But it felt like Amelia was gone from me longer than she actually was.

I missed my Amelia.

When we work together we have an unspoken energy that runs the salon.

If I do one thing… she does the other.

If I stop doing that thing and do something, she picks up the slack and gets that job done.

I’ve been here for two and a half years and Amelia is my number one.

There’ve been others that have come before at this salon, but Amelia and I really make this place sing.

She just flew in from Okinawa Japan, 2 days ago and here she’s ready for work at 3pm on a Monday, ready to roll.

I was coming out from the back when I first saw her.

Her blonde hair was down and she was wearing a burgundy dress.

As she walked toward me down the hallway, I was so happy to see her. Just to see her lovely face again and her smile made me melt.

She’s so my favorite.

I miss Amelia more than I missed my girlfriend, Cherie.

We hug so tight. God, I missed her.

I’m so relived she’s home. It feels so long I’ve been without her.

Having Amelia back at the salon lets me know that we’re going to survive this season.

My buddy Church has had some recent developments in his life that are amazing and I know he wants to hang and share. He suggests Monday night, but knowing Amelia is just back I tell him Tuesday, because if there’s even the remote chance Amelia can have a snack or a drink with me Monday upon her return, he has to wait.

Tis’ the season, and we get killed at the salon. The air conditioning’s been of the fritz but the boys come to fix it, and we soldier through.

It is non-stop mayhem, but even though Amelia’s been gone for two weeks and is just back, she steps up to the challenge like a pro. We actually trade off duties and Amelia does the job seamlessly.

Amelia and I are a charming, well oiled machine at the salon when we’re being overrun with customers.

They all have to tan before Memorial Day weekend and we have to accommodate.

And accommodate we do.

This is our Christmas season. I will smile, joke and love every person that walks in the door tonight.

Even if they walk in at closing while we mop the floors and carry out the trash.

I know Amelia is exhausted, but we vow to go to Marathon diner for food and drinks to catch up on stories.

We clear everybody out of the salon and cleanse the property.

Amelia is very proactive when it comes to keeping the place clean.

I just want sip a Manhattan with her at Marathon and spend time with her.

So happy she’s back.

 

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Philadelphia, PA, USA

Author: phicklephilly

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