Every once in a while I frequent this bakery for some fresh from the oven Jamaican patty. One afternoon I stopped by and inquired about particular donut – vanilla glazed (seems likes it’s being phased out for the more fancy decorated, filled donuts). The employees, one didn’t seem to know what I was talking about and the other didn’t seem to understand clearly and help up a honey glazed in question. I answered no and explained the vanilla glazed donut as a simple donut with a plain white glaze on the top. In the process of trying to put back the honey glazed donut, it dropped on the floor. She picked it up and set it aside while she organized the food trays. Then I noticed she looked up, side to side decided that no one could see her and she placed the dirty donut with the rest on the tray for sale. I did a double take but didn’t say anything in that moment as bakery started to fill with people. I waited to get a moment alone with her but the opportunity didn’t come. I left but it bothered me to no end.
The next day I went to speak with the other woman I am friendlier with to alert her to what I saw. The same women who pick up the dirty donut and put it back on the sales tray was putting Jamaican patties on the tray to place in the oven. As she picked them from the bag to load unto the oven tray one dropped. Again she put it of to the side and as soon as she thought no one was looking she slipped it into the tray with the others for the oven. I thought, ‘what the hell is this and why am I witnessing this crap.’ I know of course. I was there to see because I was being challenged to speak up. Just as I called the women I am on friendlier terms with the store was flooded with people (rush hour). All hands had to be on deck to serve the customers taking away my opportunity to say something, so l left, this time more disturbed than the last time as I realized that this particular employee had a practice of bad hygiene practices. I was haunted with questions that refuse to let my mind rest, ‘how do you know that the patties you have bought weren’t ones that were dropped on the floor and put back on the tray for your unsuspecting ass to eat?’
Deeply disturbed I sat brooding in my living room that evening flicking through the stube-tube (TV) when I daughter asked, “mom what are you watching?” “Nothing I said.” “What’s wrong.” she asked and I told her. “eeeeeewwwwwwwww, that’s nasty, mommy you have to say something, that is my favourite place to buy patties plus they can lose their food license.” Sighing I know she is right. So today I left determine to call the woman I am friendlier with aside and explain even if I have to wait a bit.
I reached the bakery and immediately called my friend aside and explained the occasions I saw that other employee exercising poor hygiene practices that is hazardous to people’s health and detrimental to their business should health inspectors observe the practice. She told me thank you and said she would report it to the owners. I left feeling much better.
The moral of my story?
There are times when we will be called upon to bear witness to the things we have seen and when that time arises we have a choice to make. To pretend we didn’t see or hear or rise up and speak the truth of what we’ve seen because it is the right thing to do.
The truth is….
So many of us on so many occasion bear witness to things and we do nothing, saying nothing, never thinking have any accountability, that it has anything to do with us or that it would affect us or happen to us.
Know Fact:Bacteria clings to food instantaneously, hence once that contaminated food is ingested it immediately begins to impact ones health.
Ask yourself this….
How many times you could have unknowingly eaten something off the ground because someone has poor hygiene practices? ( How would you even know that you have?
Yeah at times it feels as if it would be easier, less complicated to keep quiet, to go alone to get along, to pretend you don’t know, to forget, feign amnesia. Who is going to suspect? Especially if no one else saw what you saw, who is going to know? But never give thought to or simply forget that life is a circle and what goes around comes around and ultimately each choice we make has a consequence, a price we’ll be forced to pay when we least suspect it.