Friday, June 22, 2018

THEY LOVE THEIR JOBS: Panera cashier, lifeguard

Shae Timmons Academy of the Holy Names senior

Place of employment: Countryside Country Club

Job title: Junior swim coach and lifeguard

As a longtime competitor on the Academy swim team, Timmons feels very much at home teaching beginners, working as a lifeguard and coaching the Countryside Country Club swim team. Timmons works as a lifeguard on weekday afternoons and on weekends from noon to 5 p.m. She also offers group lessons and individual lessons at the country club for beginning swimmers. She even works through the summers coaching the club's swim team, which competes against other country clubs in the area.

Best part: "I enjoy going to the swim meet competitions during the summer and having the kids do really well. This past summer, I had the opportunity of coaching a winning team; all age groups won their division."

Worst part: "The worst part is sitting in a cold pool for two hours; sometimes it takes a bit longer for the kids to learn to swim."

Funniest story: "There was once a 2-year-old boy in the pool who was trying to eat a bug that was flying around him. I constantly had to remind him to stop trying to eat the insect." She finally had to intervene and remove the bug herself so that the boy would not swallow it. "It was really funny, but I really didn't want him to eat it."

Hardest part: "Sometimes I have to yell at the kids to WALK — NOT RUN on the side of the pool. I really don't enjoy having to raise my voice at the kids, but it's for their own safety."

Future career: "I'm not quite sure exactly what I want to do yet, but I would like to pursue a career in military service."

As told to Gini Barreda, Academy of the Holy Names

Theresa Lopez Academy of the Holy Names senior

Place of employment: West Shore Panera Bread Co.

Job title: Cashier

Working there since: December

Although Lopez is not in charge of food preparation, the fate of the order and the happiness of the customers rest in her hands as she takes their orders and their money. She works mostly on Saturdays and Sundays.

Best part: "My managers are all so funny. Plus, I get 50 percent off all of the food for myself."

Worst part: Panera has become quite popular and customers are constantly overflowing in the restaurant, especially on the weekends. "The worst part of my job is definitely lunch and dinner rush on Saturdays."

Funniest story: "One time, the mother of one of my classmates came in on a Sunday morning to purchase a bagel. Her total came out to be $1.34. I guess I was really distracted that day because she paid with a $5 bill and I gave her $1.34 in change. It was a bit embarrassing, but she understood and I laughed about it later."

Hardest part: "I've never really had an annoying customer. But, I find what makes my job so difficult is when customers with heavy accents come in to order food. It's just so frustrating and I feel bad because I can't understand them."

Future career: Lopez hopes to one day become a successful politician or go into international business.

As told to Gini Barreda, Academy of the Holy Names

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