Lyle's Blog

What a crazy week

Saturday, April 26, 2008

I have not had a chance to write anything down all week. Between one thing to another, I seemed to be busy just about every minute during my waking hours. But I will try and capsulize it the best that i can for you who are interested.

The diner took up most of my time but I was also working to help my parents get their house on the market. We are hoping to get them closer to the hospital, shopping, and us if they need something. I think they like the Mountain View Park area and I know quite a few people there so I really think it will be a good place for them.

I checked in with Andy from LMAS nearly every evening at closing to get an update on how they were doing. On Wednesday evening, we both were working late and were the only ones here. We talked for a while to give ourselves a break. It seemed so far from done but he was confident. That part was probably the most freeing for me during this conversion. If i would have been involved in it, I would have had 10 times the stress. But in trusting Andy, most of that stress was gone. We laughed and joked then went back to work. When I locked up at 11PM, he had gone.

I received quite a bit of help throughout the week from many of my suppliers which will allow more money to be given to the Bend Community Center. Franz Bakery, Eberhard Dairy, Food Services of America, and Sysco Foods all agreed to give us product for the big weekend. McDonald Septic called me and asked if they could give a cash donation. I then received a call from Dana Signs out of Redmond. They said that they wanted to contribute and gave us a banner that read, "Grand Reopening Today". I was overwhelmed by the support that was given.

I then received a phone call from my old pal, Bob Shotwell. I will write a posting on him more in detail one day but the bottom line is he is up in his 80's now and still wants to work. He told me that he just got a job working with the Source Magazine. He then went on to tell me that his first job was covering us on Saturday. I don't know what I was more excited about. The fact that he was working again or that he was covering our reopening. Bob wrote the first article on us back in 1987 for the Oregonion. We have been close friends ever since.

Friday was a day of last minute details for the reopening, as always small problems to handle, and picking up paint for my parents house that was to be painted this weekend. One of my waitresses sons was very gracious in giving me a very good price and agreeing to paint the house this weekend. When i finally finished off all my running around, it was nearly 8PM. I came back in at closing and checked with Andy who had been there all day. He had hoped to be done around 5AM the next morning. I could see how tired he was but he was still able to laugh and I bid him goodnight and went home.

Surprisingly, I slept pretty good that night. I felt that i would probably drive by the diner a few times but never felt the need to. I called down around 6 and asked how things were. I was told, "You don't want to know and it will be all ready for you at 8.

Judy and I drove up around 8 only to be told to stay out a little longer and they would need us at 9. So Casey and I drove down to my parents house to take out the paint and bide some time. Upon arriving back, Judy and I were staged outside the front door of the diner. With Trinity leading me in and Casey and Andy leading Judy in, we were placed in the best spot of the diner. Andy started his countdown and said "3". Connie, one of our old employees got impatient and yelled out, "2". After a few giggles from around the room, Andy started all over again. On 1, Judy and I opened our eyes and looked up a whole new room. The first thing that I saw was the huge "Jake's" that had been put on the large wall on our northern side. Without the partition in the middle of the room, the room looked huge. The booths had been reupholstered in a brown fabric along with the chairs at the counter. The chairs on the tables had been painted black with red and black cushions. Plants had been staged throughout the room. Sorry, Johnny Anderson, but they are still plastic. Our articles and pictures were redone and graced the walls in many places. New tile had replaced the linoleum around the counter and new carpet on the floors. The place looked fantastic.

After the shoot, which included our whole family around the Jake's sign, we were able to open the doors to the customers and went right to work. Kristi Miller from Good Morning Central Oregon showed up to assist with the serving of the customers. I was so impressed with her as she poured coffee and bussed tables. Taffy Gleason was around to answer any questions regarding the Bend Community Center and we even had some of our close friends help out with serving and busing.

Around 1 or so, it slowed down and we all sat down to have a bite. The girls were about to take off to the airport so Trinity could get back to Portland and they left a movie for me to return. Frank said that he had not seen it but had heard about it and said that he would like to watch it. I said that sounded great and we met over at my house to watch, get this, "Enchanted". It was actually a very good movie. At least what I saw of it. I fell asleep and awoke when I received a call on my cell. I turned to Frank and asked what had happened in the movie and he said, "I am not sure, I think I fell asleep too.". He remembered more than I did however.

I returned to help out during supper and am posting this quick review of the week so that you will know where I am at. All in all, it has turned out very good with only a few problems. The table lights had to be turned off as they are too hot, some plugs had to be changed around, we don't have a TV yet, and we had to crack open one of the doors as the thermostat is missing but we are up and running, it is beautiful, and most important, it is comfortable.

The video should be out sometime in May. Thank you so much to Andy and the Let's Make a Space crew who worked so hard, to Kristi Miller who took her own time out to help, my buddy, Bob for writing on us, my daughter, Carrie for the pictures that she took for his article and for us and to the many friends who worked and supported us this morning.

 

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