Posted by: JulieAloha | April 29, 2017

365 Gratitude Project – Day 119: Guest Services

April 29, 2017

Today I was scheduled to be the Breaker for Guest Services, which means I would work a shorter shift, 10-4, and roam between the two locations giving breaks to coworkers and generally helping out. However, someone called out and I was asked to fill in at a West Guest Services for the day, which meant my day expanded to 9-5; luckily I was already prepared to go and I live fairly close to the Zoo – I made it with minutes to spare!

Saturday’s are typically busy days, this was no exception – I had rented out most of my ready inventory of strollers, wagons and wheelchairs by 11:00am and all three ECV’s went out within 5 minutes of each other by noon. We even had to dig into the reserves to bring extra units out to rent and I had to borrow an ECV from the other gate – the reserve units are housed in an uncovered area, so they needed to be cleaned before and after they were rented, and to borrow an ECV means someone from the other gate needs to be available to deliver the unit from one gate to the other. I also had the time and opportunity to work on some of my goals in the morning, for which I was grateful, and prepare a proposal and materials to present one of my projects to the Supervisors.

The real fun starts when all of the equipment begins to come back as people prepare to leave the Park – each wagon, stroller, wheelchair and ECV needs to be vacuumed and washed down between each use. Each time you leave the window you need to take the radio with you as Guest Services serves as one of the communication centers of the Zoo, and you also need to be able to listen for the phone as you often field questions from staff and the public, serve as contact person for Security and for Lost and Found items. You also provide minor first aid, maps and directions, general information and sometimes cashier for Kaman’s (Caricatures, Face Painting, etc.). If you’re lucky, things come in one at a time and no one else comes to the window while you’re busy cleaning – if you’re not so lucky…well it wouldn’t hurt to have a few extra hands to juggle the load. I lost count of how many units I cleaned over the course of the day – some were even rented, came back, were cleaned and rented out again.

By the time the Zoo closed at 4:00pm, there were still nine pieces of equipment out, including an ECV, there was a scooter which had been left at the gate and needed to be collected by a guest, and I had an assembly line of equipment to clean, stack and put away. We generally ask people to return rentals by 4:15 (they can stay on grounds until 5:00), but the last ECV came in at 4:40 and the guest still needed to use a wheelchair to transfer someone out to the parking lot and return. Still, I was finished cleaning and closing the office, with a little help from Sandy and Sofia, and my cash counted out and ready by a little after 5:00. Whew! What a day!

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Taps

Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, from the hills, from the sky;
All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.

Fading light, dims the sight,
And a star gems the sky, gleaming bright.
From afar, drawing nigh, falls the night.

Thanks and praise, for our days,
‘Neath the sun, ‘neath the stars, neath the sky;
As we go, this we know, God is nigh.

Sun has set, shadows come,
Time has fled, Scouts must go to their beds
Always true to the promise that they made.

While the light fades from sight,
And the stars gleaming rays softly send,
To thy hands we our souls, Lord, commend.


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