Sunday, September 12, 2010

Jack of All Trades, Master of None...

One thing that constantly amazes and amuses me (Aaron) is the never-ending list of odd jobs that being a volunteer-missionary-in-a-coffeehouse-setting requires of me. That's not a bad thing, it just means that my work weeks are often a series of small crises to be resolved, many times in ways that exceed my previous experience (and certainly my expertise)! :)

By way of examples...consider that we've lived here a little more than two months. In that time I've either volunteered for -or- been asked to accomplish the following tasks: assess and document damage from flooding associated with unseasonably heavy rain; transport large furniture items between our apartment and the shop; design, paint, repair, weather-seal, and install outdoor signage; repair upholstery, tabletops, chair legs, and other furniture pieces; sort and install miscellaneous hardware; repair a broken bathroom fixture; re-caulk a tile backsplash in the dishroom, install towel bars and hooks; chisel wiring lines in brick and concrete (both by hand and with power tools); wire, mount, and install indoor spotlights; install and maintain planter boxes; cut/prune grass, trees, and hedges...the list goes on and on. Also, as our coffeehouse's designated "gopher," I make virtually all of the shop's buying runs to retail and wholesale food & beverage distributors, as well special trips to various hardware and grocery stores...we average at least one or two such extra errands per day.

In addition to my handyman responsibilities, I'm also the shop's de facto Business Manager, which means I'm also in charge of the following: design, create, and maintain all spreadsheets; track daily, weekly, and monthly sales trends; present sales data at monthly staff meetings; create shop letterhead; correspond with various bands/artists about using their music in our shops; create and maintain all front-counter and money-counting paperwork logs; create and maintain all retail and wholesale ordering checklists; okaying and conducting everyday shop transactions with outside vendors and staff members; purchasing and replenishing all office supplies...this list goes on and on, too! :)

I say none of this to complain -we absolutely LOVE Poland- but to help explain the myriad responsibilities and complexities that also accompany our "coffeehouse ministry" service here. There's SO much to do in terms of everyday operations alone...please continue to pray for our continued flexibility, vision, perseverance, and determination!


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