Over the summer, I decided I would volunteer at a local soup kitchen. I clipped the “Volunteers Needed” ad from the newspaper, posted it on the refrigerator and promised myself that I would phone the next day to get the details.
The next day never came.
That was 5 months ago and I would be lying if I said I forgot.
The truth of the matter is the thought of committing to something that important frightened me. I did not want to deal with the guilt that would come about if and when I decided to quit. Therefore, I never called.
I received a text from the closest person I have to a BFF asking if my daughter and I would volunteer with her and her daughter Saturday at that same soup kitchen. I jumped at the chance to piggy back on her commitment. We were her plus 2.
We arrived at 9am to prepare for lunch. There was so much to do. I did not realize that we would be responsible for food prep, cooking and serving. I truly had no idea. What I was thinking?
We were lucky that the lunch coordinator had more than 6 years of experience. He and his wife had a menu planned: Turkey Linguine, Green Bean Medley, Mixed Green Salad, Rolls and Assorted Desserts. We assisted where we were needed most – food prep.
We chopped turkey, arranged pastries and tossed salad. There was even a taste testing.
*Rule of thumb* if you wouldn’t eat it – DON’T COOK IT! DON’T SERVE IT!
I was horrified when I was asked to taste what we had prepared.
How ignorant is that?
Rather than be accused of being a snob, I complied. What could I do? My daughter was watching and to my surprise lunch was good.
It took approximately 45 minutes to serve everyone and at times I was worried whether or not we had enough. As you can imagine, I did not want to run out and at the same time; I did not want leftovers.
We were fortunate to have enough food and lucky for the know-how of the lunch coordinator and his wife. For the most part, they had a backup plan.
However, it was disheartening to see so many people.
among different races and ethnic backgrounds –
hunger does not discriminate.
As Thanksgiving week comes to a close I am excited to say it felt good to do for others. While I am grateful for the experience and happy to have been able to share it with my daughter, I am thankful that our involvement with the local soup kitchen was by choice and not because we didn’t have a choice.
Volunteer. It makes you feel good.
I’m Just Sayin’…(Damn!)