It all started when I was on my way to work. I got a text from one of my employees saying that the Comfort Inn across the way was on fire. 5 seconds later I got a call from my Manager telling me that I needed to come in the back way or I wouldn’t be able to make it in.
Yeah, that place was totally on fire.
We started the day with about 10 real customers in the store, mainly because they where already shopping. The last one was out of the store by 1:15, little over 20 minutes after I got into work. After that it was only people coming into the store to gawk at the Inn burning or people who where staying at the Inn looking for a place to warm up.
That lasted for about an hour or so, then we only had people who wanted to watch it burn, didn’t want to be outside, and need to be spoken to repeatedly about blocking the entrance of the store. At one point I had to kick a couple of them out because they decided it would be a great idea to run around the store, punching each other, pulling each other’s shirts over their heads. It sounds vastly more sane than it was.
After awhile they started roping off the entire road leading to the store, and I went to find out what was going on. On being prompted one of the firemen simply said, “It is highly advisable that you leave the store because of the vast amounts of smoke you and your customers will be inhaling.” Awesome, that would explain my sore throat and headache.
It is now 5:30 and I am finishing a post and drinking a beer when I should be closing the store in four hours. I believe I might have been out of work now for all of 40 minutes. Also I was told from three people that I am getting paid for all day because I have “manager” in my title.
I should point out at this point that I have at least one friend that I know of that worked across the street that is now unemployed, and that this is all a super bummer. As far as I know no one was injured and everyone got out safely. That is the best thing about today.