Sunday, August 10, 2008

a hard week...

Every one has their bad days...every once in a while they stretch into bad weeks. For me it began last week with news that a gentleman from town had committed suicide. He was a long time local who's kids go to high school with my daughter and his wife, a great customer, has the same name as me...(a topic we often discussed because never has either of us been in a place with so many women named Carri) We got word the way we usually do by people calling up for trays of sandwiches or breakfast things to take up to the family. It begets many tearful conversations and makes it difficult to focus on the tasks at hand. (nothing like consoling a friend over the death of their partner and having to turn around and make a latte for some impatient tourist who doesn't know whats going on!) But focus we must and with wedding season in full swing I had 100 petit fours plus two other wedding cakes to deliver before the weekend was over. Well,my anxiety escalated as the petit fours were a little problematic and my inexperience with the medium definitely showed in the final product. (in other words, they looked like shit...okay, not shit...rustic, yeah, that's it) I delivered them in boxes, hoping the wedding they were being served at was one of those down home Homer weddings where nothings too perfect. My heart sank when I walked into the reception area and the vision before me was that of the most elegant wedding I've ever seen! My petit fours were SO not worthy of the lovely setting...I tried to console myself thinking that at least someone else made the wedding cake and those little gems of mine, while they weren't the most beautiful, they would be mighty tasty! Well, I still had to get myself back to the bakery to frost another cake (to be picked up in 45 minutes)...this one with the couples name and the date written on the top of the cake. I got it done, just in time loaded it in the groomsmans car and off he went. I breathed a sigh of relief...one more cake to go and it wasn't being delivered until the next day. (see the Russian wedding below) My calm was shattered when a very short time later the phone rang with an irate bride on the other end saying I had misspelled her name on their wedding cake! Luckily they weren't so far away, they were able to bring it back for me to fix (while they watched!). crisis averted. right. The next day we delivered the cake out to the village. It's about 30 miles one way, Sunday morning of what is usually a day off for me. I didn't charge extra for the delivery because I knew that money was tight on this event and I wanted to help. We left there happy with the cake and getting to see the village, and I went on to have a couple of fairly relaxing days off. Thinking that the vortex had passed, I went back to work on Wednesday pretty refreshed and with renewed bravado. That lasted about an hour until the women who'd ordered the cake for the Russian wedding came in. I was excited to hear how things went but she handed me the bottom tier of the cake, half eaten, complaining that it was burnt and dry and her mother insisted she get her money back...I was stunned! Of course, I apologized profusely and refunded her without hesitation. After she left we looked over the cake and considering it had been sitting since Sunday, it actually wasn't bad at all! I went upstairs to the office to take a moment to regain my composure and there was an e-mail from a gal who was inspired by our business gushing about how she wants to open a bakery in Talkeetna.(don't take this tale to heart Anita, mostly owning a bakery is all good, you go girl!) That was all it took, the tears starting flowing and could've gone on for days except that I had three more weddings to execute cakes for and one alone involved 15 individual cakes, each one a different flavor! So I set about baking 25 cakes on Wed, crumb coated and mostly frosted them all on Thurs and so it went...this time, all went off without a hitch. Whew!











8 comments:

alittlebird said...

You're amazing. 25 cakes in a day after that week?! Superhuman. Thinking of you...
Morgan

alittlebird said...

BEAUTIFUL cakes.

Anonymous said...

i love you carri....you did great

Tartelette said...

Wow! I don't know what I admire the most: your hard week and how you ploughed through it or the way you held your composure with the cake return lady. There are "very" difficult people everywhere.

Michael said...

Great Job!!!

I wish I had the chance to learn more from you back at the old location.

Thanks for the refreshing honesty. A great read I will eagerly follow this blog. Keep it up.

Carri said...

Thanks for all the support! Morgan, I miss you,too! Irene, you are so awsome, it's not even funny how much I will miss you and tartlette...welcome to our wonderful (and challenging) Bakery world! I"m grateful for you all!

Carri said...

Micheal, you snuck in there when I wasn't looking!...YOU sir are who I had learned more from, I am amazed by you and your family...rock on brotha!

Carri said...

I wish I had put the word WISH in my last comment...sigh it's late, time for bed!