On Monday I started working at Target. I work from 4 a.m. to 8 a.m. four days a week. Today was my second day. My alarm goes off at 2:45, which allows me time for a quick shower, "breakfast," and a leisurely - if not lonely - commute. I'm surprised at how easy it is to get up at that hour. I'm sure that once the routine sets in, it will get harder. But right now when the alarm goes off I have that startled "I'm up, I'M UP!" reaction. Once at work the time goes by really and wonderfully fast. I'm part of what's called the "flow team" - and in this case the word team isn't lame lip service. We walk in together, clock in together, work together, take a break together, and as we finish our individual tasks we find who needs help and dig in. There's a damn big job that needs to be done, and it only gets accomplished if we all work together.
Now, I'm not going to lie. In a perfect world I'd be at the camera store, being paid to talk about photography and surfing the internet between customers. But this isn't a perfect world, so I have to work to earn a paycheck now. And make no mistake about it - what I do at Target is work. That huge bottle of liquid laundry detergent you buy? It's heavy, right? Now, pick up four of those at once. And repeat for 4 hours or so. Now, not every box is that heavy. Legos, as it turns out, are like marshmellows - wonderfully light and airy! But it's hours of bending, lifting, walking, and pulling pallet jacks. And yet, so far...I really like it.
When I was hired, I was told that it would be for about 25 hours a week, but that it would be easy to get closer to 40 hours. "Ask and you shall receive" is sort of the motto - if your scheduled 4 hour shift is done and you want more hours, find the boss and ask. 9 times out of 10 they'll put you to work. Want more hours? Ask to be trained in another area. "We like initiative."
So today I worked 5½ hours at Target. I came home, made some chicken salad (for dinner), took a little nappy-poo, did some yoga (Yoga for arthritis/Yoga for the rest of us), then headed off to Pier1. (I'm a little less likely to wax poetic about that job. It's not bad at all, but I like to stay busy and I love when everything is super organized and there are no judgement calls. On those criteria, Target wins. ;) )
So anyway, I made chicken salad. I've had a hankering. And the entire time I was at Pier1 all I could think about was coming home, toasting up rolls and chomping into a big ole chicken salad sandwich. At one point the manager asked if I was off at 6 or 7. I hesitated for a looooong time, and said "7" with a funny smirk. Fortunately, the manager lady has a good sense of humor, and said something about me wanting to fudge it. "Well," I said, "I made this chicken salad and I'm really excited to go home and have dinner."
As luck would have it, it started storming and we got reallllly slow. I got sent home 20 minutes early. And while I need every dime I can get, I jumped at the chance. I stopped on the way home and got a beer and was still home just as my shift would have finished. Yay!
I am capable of taking better food shots. However, not when I've been awake for 17 hours and I'm really freaking hungry. My inner Shrek was screaming "GET INTO M'BELLY!" So a quickie Instagram shot is all I have to share. And here's the deal: I'm not a food blogger. I'm not trying to convince you that you HAVE TO TRY THIS RECIPE! In fact, after we had finished eating, my picky eater manfriend said "You can make that again. Don't change the recipe." From this eater, this is a ringing endorsement. (A ringing endorsement for him, but he prefers foods on the bland side, but I was still happy to hear it. Good feedback is good feedback.)
Okay, with a nod to the fact that this is mostly for my reference, here's the recipe:
Classic/Basic Chicken Salad
5 cups cooked chicken, shredded
½ cup finely chopped celery
¼+ cup finely diced sweet onions
1 scant teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon lime juice
2/3 cup mayonnaise
Combine all ingredients. Chill for a couple of hours. Enjoy on a hearty roll with cheese and a side of chips. Made 4 big sandwiches with enough left overs for probably two more.
I enjoyed this. But then there's a part of me that wonders what some green peppers would do. Or dill pickle relish. Or maybe some banana peppers...