Wednesday, January 14, 2015

One Month Out

photo by Isabella Mohr

Thirty-one days from now, I'll be on the water,
rowing one of many cruises on the busiest day of the year.

Yes, my friends, Valentine's Day is one month away,
and moving fast in our direction.
If you're in charge of getting a gondola servizio ready for that big day,
you know what I mean.

The days go by quickly as you work on getting every detail squared away.
The more boats you have,
        the more cruises you can book.
The more boats you have,
        the more work you need to get done before that rush.

As I write this, I've got two boats out of the water,
another in the water that needs work,
three oars waiting to get their stripes,
another oar needing repair,
a bunch of silver champagne buckets that need polishing,
and the list goes on.

Do I have enough blankets?
Do I have enough bottles of each beverage in stock?
What's the weather gonna be like?
Oh, and then there's all the staffing.

Sometimes you own your business,
and sometimes it owns you.

How well-prepared you are for V-Day usually determines how things will go
on February 14th, as well as on the days that surround it.
St. Valentine's Day is a blessing for those of us who can keep our boats in the water for it.  Some of our friends come down from northern operations to help carry the load, and it's a pleasure to share the water with them.

One month from now, all of my gondolas will be out,
making great memories for those folks riding in them. 
It's not a normal day for us, but then really,
what IS "normal" in this business?
All I can tell you is that it's "normal" for things to be like this...
                                                        ...when we're one month out.

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