Chalet Girl Confidential: The Most Magical Time of the Year?
One would think that Christmas in a ski town is the most magical time of the year for a chalet girl. I’d always imagined it as life inside a snow globe, snow gently falling, colored lights, silver bells, and good cheer all around. Should be a dream come true for a newly trained chalet girl, right?
Well not exactly. Christmas is the most important week of the season in most European Ski Resorts and though we had just settled in and trained, the staff needed to appear professional at all times.
Let’s just say that things were not playing out as planned. I’m not saying we were all completely useless, but we were a little like Reindeers in the Headlights. On Christmas Eve our Head Chef ran away in the middle of the night, taking the company car with him. He left behind 5 culinary incompetent teenagers, 10 turkeys, 9 sacks of potatoes, and 7 kilos of cranberries (where was the partridge in a pear tree?). Christmas dinner would be expected for the guests in less than seven hours.
We pooled our limited talents and surprisingly, a delicious meal was served. Having pulled the veritable rabbit out of the hat, we felt we should reward ourselves with copious amounts of “chalet wine”, not to be confused with Chateau Lafite! Next thing you know, some of the staff can’t keep their clothes on. Though this can often be a successful formula for meeting new potential partners, it let to some awkward run-ins with guests.
Having survived Christmas, barely, we still had New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day to get past. New Year’s Eve was great fun until my boss found me passed out on the kitchen floor surrounded by croissants still wearing my “glad rags” from the night before. I quickly scrambled into my work clothes, and after forgetting multiple breakfast orders, I took to the sofa for a much needed rest. Dead asleep, I felt something sharp poking me. An elderly guest was prodding me with a ski pole asking for more coffee. Shameful! This day was only going to get worse…I hadn’t even addressed the bedrooms yet. At first our team had decided that we were only prepared to clean hotel rooms with odd numbers, but this being a very fragile day, maybe room numbers divisible by five would be a better plan. My head was spinning again just trying to work out that math, yes, this day was going downhill fast.
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