1 EAGLETON NOTES: A Bowl of Cherries

.

.

Sunday, 9 August 2015

A Bowl of Cherries

It's a blog for heavens sake. How can one have writers' block (or is it writer's block?). The strange thing is that I have so many notes about blogs to be written that it's almost a daunting task just reading through them all. Anyway after a very busy two weeks where reading posts took precedence over writing one I'm on the ferry travelling south with no excuse to get up and do something else.

You know how the saying goes - people don’t remember what you say or do, but how you make them feel.

So why do organisations not realise that their reception staff are such an important part of their organisation and that their interface with the public should receive far more attention than it obviously does. I say this because I sometimes think that the criteria adopted these days is to find a person who can 'protect' the organisation from its customers, patients or clients rather than facilitate the interaction.

I am by nature a happy, positive person and I approach reception staff with that attitude. I went to medical practice recently where the reception staff are invariably very busy with phone calls and patients waiting to speak to them but are, in my experience, always pleasant and helpful. However on this occasion there was a fairly new member of staff who looked up from the telephone call she had just taken and with a broad and genuine smile dealt with my requests. It made my day.

I then had a hospital appointment and again received a cheerful welcome and some banter with the reception staff and nurses and was out from the (again very cheerful) consultant 5 minutes before my appointment was due.

To complete my medical trilogy I went across the car park to the dental practice where one of the staff was completely the opposite. It's true that what she had to tell me didn't exactly please me but it was the dismissive and rude way she dealt with me that irked. She denied vehemently that she had been rude so I will reduce the charge to cheeky with scant regard for the fact that she was speaking to someone over three times her age.

Basically it turned my day from being perfect (and it was still only 0945) to being decidedly imperfect.

So I decided to treat myself to a bacon roll at the Woodlands. There I was met by another happy smile and was asked if I wanted my 'usual large black".  I retired to my crossword with the feeling that a modicum of well-being was restored.

Have a nice day. Or as someone in the US apparently now says "Have the day you deserve". Ah. Perhaps that was the problem.

As Ethel Merman and then Rudy Vallee sang (and Lew Brown wrote back in 1931)

People are queer, they're always crowing, scrambling and rushing about; 
Why don't they stop someday, address themselves this way? 
Why are we here? Where are we going? It's time that we found out. 
We're not here to stay; we're on a short holiday. 

Life is just a bowl of cherries. 
Don't take it serious; life's so mysterious. 
You work, you save, you worry so, 
But you can't take your dough when you go, go, go. 
So keep repeating it's the berries, 
The strongest oak must fall, 
The sweet things in life, to you were just loaned 
So how can you lose what you've never owned? 
Life is just a bowl of cherries, 
So live and laugh at it all.




33 comments:

  1. Even before the rude staff at the dental practice did her best to spoil your good mood, the balance was actually 2:1 - two kind, friendly ones v. one unfriendly one. But usually it is the current, last event to influence our mood the most, isn't it. Therefore, I am glad you had another good experience at the Woodlands.
    When I come across someone who is rude, grumpy, impolite or just generally disinterested in their job, I want to take them aside and tell them that they are doing neither their employer nor their customers and, least of all, themselves a favour with this attitude. But quite the contrary, if they pull themselves together, put a smile on their face and try to see the positive sides of their job (of having a job at all!), it will make work easier, the hours pass faster, and they will eventually become happier. It's so simple, and yet seems so beyond the reach of many.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That really is excellent advice Meike.I think that I was too surprised and irked to think of that response but I hope I remember it next time (and have the courage to do it!).

      Delete
  2. Life is a bowl of cherries ~ some are sweet and some are tart. Have a good trip GB.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In that particular bowl, Carol, they were all sweet (and I ate every one!).

      Delete
  3. Have a safe journey and try not to annoy anyone else.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Adrian. I'll try very hard. I think I've succeeded so far.

      Delete
  4. I'm glad that your day wasn't completely spoiled by the one bad apple in the bunch of nice friendly people that you encountered.
    Gosh I KNOW how you felt since we Geminians can't stand rudeness.
    Enjoy your trip!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are, as usual, quite right Virginia. It's one thing we really detest.

      Delete
  5. I have to confess that even with those lyrics added, the link between your experiences and a bowl of cherries had me puzzled until I got to Carol's comment (?) I do agree that the attitude with which you are received/served can make vs spoil your day, though. And I also recognise the fact that you can kind of get writer's block from having too many ideas just as well as from having none!
    I wish you a week of cheerful attitudes ahead!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Monica. I nearly entitled the post 'Life is just a bowl of cherries'. Perhaps I should have done. I wanted to use the photo. I love cherries but had bought a punnet a week or so previously which were so sour and hard that I threw them into the compost after trying a few.

      Delete
  6. You are so right about the difference people's behaviour and attitudes make. We had what was supposed to be a great treat in the form of an extravagant trip to London on Wednesday. But the very expensive meal wasn't up to scratch at all, the play we attended was awful, and because of the tube strike, it took us until nearly midnight to get back to our hotel. But the people we came across, without exception, were kind, helpful and courteous. It made the stay worthwhile after all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Frances people's attitudes can be what you remember long after the rest has gone.

      Delete
  7. Those cherries look good! That is a great shot.
    It is bad to encounter rudeness. Best thing, smile back at them and thank them for their kindness. That MIGHT make them think! Maybe not, but if they feel guilt, perhaps they will change. And I have never heard the American expression you gave in your post, the one I most often hear is..."Have a GREAT day!".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I suspect, Kay, that such irony would have been lost on this girl and as she didn't think she had been rude she thought it was i who was being unreasonable. when I was in the States many yeas ago I saw, and wore, a badge which said 'Please don't tell me what sort of a day to have'. Everyone ignored it.

      Delete
  8. It takes rain and sun to make a rainbow. x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like that one Sue. I shall try and remember it.

      Delete
  9. I agree that people who serve the public can have a huge influence. As a teacher, I found that my captive audience were much easier to deal with if I treated them with respect. Did I ever learn to banter?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Absolutely Red. Respect is so important as you say.

      Delete
  10. I confess to a blog drought as well but it will return. And people don't care how much you know until they know how much you care, so those first impressions really matter! It irritates me that so many people apply for vet nursing because they love animals and don't like people! Ahem...who pays the bills for the pet? Yup the people they were rude to, or dismissive with! I do hope the doctor!s news was all good even if the dentist is going to cost you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The doctor's news was excellent thank you Fiona.

      Delete
  11. You're so right, GB. We had a very funny (and ultimately day-brightening) conversation the last time Rob went to the doctor. He'd twisted his knee and could hardly hobble, so I was along to play the role of PLP (public leaning post). The doctor said, "Walk this way." Without thinking, I started in on Monty Python's "ministry of silly walks" sketch, and the doctor was off. "I love them! John Cleese is my favourite!" and soon all three of us were laughing and exchanging our favourite jokes. Don't know if it made Rob's knee heal any faster, but I know we were all feeling better when we went our separate ways. xoxox DeeDee

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. DeeDee I think you always heal faster if your attitude is positive. Actually that's not quite what I believe. I do believe, however, that you do not heal as quickly if your attitude is negative. A subtle but, important, difference. I do hope that Rob is now walking the way that he should (and can do the silly walks if he wants too - they were soooo funny).

      Delete
    2. Thanks, GB. Yes, he is definitely on the mend. xoxox

      Delete
  12. I swear, Mr. Edwards, those of us who know him are missing out on something rumored about him which just must, must be true. And that is that Adrian has been employed for years all over the world just to train future insolent, rude, discourteous, ill-mannered wait staff and receptionists.

    Have a lovely week to come. You too, Adrian!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ooooh Mrs Thyme you've come across Adrian before then. But he really is very nice to animals.

      Delete
    2. I don't train them, I select Bolshie folk and encourage their inhospitable traits. It saves time and is easier.

      Delete
  13. I have (rather foolishly) never been back to my dentist after a series of rude and arrogant experiences then one final one.
    I have since heard that he was in the paper and court for lack of professionalism

    I really must find another and get my records transferred across.

    "Unacceptable behaviour should never be accepted. That's why it's called 'unacceptable'. " - Katherine De Chevalle

    ReplyDelete
  14. 'Tis one of the reason I prefer to shop here locally...where faces are familiar and smiles are freely given. So much nicer...for both the receiver and the giver.

    It costs nothing to be pleasant, but the rewards are great and are priceless.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's the nice thing about Stornoway Lee. It is small and there are not that many faces to recognise!

      Delete
  15. Your "usual large black"? The mind boggles. Is The Woodlands a house of ill repute? If it is, may I ask what's wrong with large white women?

    ReplyDelete