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Emergency thoughts and prayers please


archer
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Hi, got to make this quick. Been out of power since about 15 minutes after my last post however many days ago.

 

If you want TL:DR please go to the end to see my request.

 

A pipe burst in my ceiling however many days ago, been without water and electricity since then. Haven't been capable of cleaning up the mess and the company which way willing hasn't been able to tackle the job due to no generators available.

 

Finally after a long day of scavanging online and driving around in person, my wife scored us a hotel room which would take us and our cats.

 

Skipping over long ordeals between each paragraph.

 

Got to the hotel, checked in. Our room has no heat. Still a HUGE upgrade over what we'd been living in since we had plumbing and could take showers.

 

I spent a lot of time after getting to the hotel convulsing and when not doing that shaking like someone who has Parkinson's really badly due to my health conditions rather than from the cold. My wife was so busy with her back toward me that she didn't notice the convulsions or she'd been trying to get me to a hospital because that's not a normal part of my symptomology.

 

Anyway after midnight, the fire alarm went off so we donned our clothes, gathered purses, wallets, and pet carriers for our three cats and made for the door. I'd previously noticed there was a strong odor in the hall but nothing that smelled the slightest bit dangerous. 

 

My wife and adult daughter got ahead of me because I forgot my rather large bag of medicine.

 

By the time I caught up with them instead of stopping in the lobby area or the adjacent dining room, they'd gone outside into the roughly 27 degree weather. A hotel employee caught me as I was passing and told me there was no emergency.

 

As I got outside I shouted at my family that everything was okay and to come back. My wife was hysterical because the pet carrier she had burst open and Baby, a house cat with zero outside experience had disappeared into the night.

 

Got to cut this shorter. My wife ended up falling on the ice/snow and hurting herself. An ambulance took her to the hospital alone while we continued the search.

 

My daughter who spends a lot of time in a wheelchair, and who was the one whose car flipped, wasn't able to continue long and she went back inside. My other daughter wasn't doing well in the cold but continued with me some time.

 

I rallied like a champ last night and spent over 4 hours outside searching. Caught a glimpse of Baby around 4 am under a car around the back of the hotel but she didn't appear interested in coming to me despite being four feet away and me having wet food for her on the ground in front of me when I saw her. Haven't caught a glimpse of her again.

 

The temp this morning has dropped another six degrees from what it was last night and the wind has picked up and is howling like a banshee. I went out and managed one round of the building and had to call it quits.

 

The hopital this morning couldn't find anything wrong with my wide despite the fact that she can no longer walk and kicked her loose. They after a heroic effort, managed to find a cab to bring her back to the hotel.\\

 

We managed to get her back to the room and into bed after a lot of effort. WE used the power chair which we keep in the van. If couldn't find traction on the snow but did okay after getting inside.

 

I sat for a while in the lobby and dining room area lookng out windows hoping to catch a glimpse of Baby.

 

I really need your thoughts and prayers in this because it's going to take a miracle at this point to get her to come to me. I'm going back outside in a moment to circle the building endlessly looking for her.

 

She's a beautiful Calico who's named after Dr. Tachyon's ship if that helps you focus your thoughts and prayers.

 

Gotta go, Thanks.

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Back inside. 

 

The wind has died down significantly so that it doesn't cut through like a knife.

 

However, the light sensitive lens of my glasses eventually made the ground so dark that I can't see whether I'm stepping on snow or ice. So it became too dangerous to walk around wearing my glasses. I've successfully made an astounding number of DEX checks over the last two days. Either DEX checks are really easy now or I'm one of the most dexterous people on the planet.

 

I think I'll be able to see the grounds while not wearing my glasses and can see movement well enough at a distance to figure out whether I need to investigate or not. Talked to a lot of people mostly as they were checking out and going to their cars with no luck. I made at least three laps of the building, maybe four because I lost count toward the end.

 

I think I'll be able to go out again after warming up and resting some.

 

The electric door in the lobby isn't working so people are having to pry it open as they come and go. About half of them are leaving the door standing wide open to the outside, which feels like an arctic blast under the door to our first floor room.

 

The hotel is going to see if they have a pet-friendly room open up which has heat. It would be a herculean effort to try to move all the crap we had to bring with us, particular since none of us are physically capable of moving all of that stuff again without significant assistance. My warming up time is roughly corresponding to the amount of time it'll be until the hotel figures out whether it'll have a room or not.

 

Judging from the parking lot, there's less than half of the cars having left than what I'd normally expect from a hotel parking lot so apparently a significant amount of people are stuck here over the long term.

 

Need to rest, gotta go.

 

7 minutes ago, death tribble said:

You are really having a time of it lately. prayers to turn things around for you being made.

 

I think I racked up some serious negative karma in a previous life. I know I'd already paid for all the negative karma that I've racked up in this one.

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Oh, and I think we were under a "boil your tap water" order that I was completely unaware of for several days because we had no communications. And I was drinking the tap water. No one else in the house was drinking tap water because they were able to drink unlimited amounts of soda (which I'm either allergic to due to artificial sweeteners or can't have because I'm diabetic) and they were drinking the limited supply of bottled water that we had.

 

So you might keep the well-being of my digestive track in your thoughts and prayers as well, every if that's a lot more icky of a subject than a precious, and objectively very beautiful cat.

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Successfully moved into the other hotel room which looks out over the back of the hotel where I caught a glimpse of Baby last night.

 

My oldest daughter managed a lap of the building looking for Baby.

 

My youngest daughter is out there right now looking.

 

The day warmed up enough that the dry snow which has been exposed to sunlight has now become melty snow which is glazed over with ice. There's still enough dry snow to walk on if you're careful to try to find it. 

 

I missed earlier explaining that my wife was having an asthma attack as she fell. She passed out at some point. Taking her inhaler repeatedly wasn't fixing the problem.

 

The hotel doesn't have the amenities that it promised. It doesn't have a coin-operated laundry. It isn't doing the laundry service at all that it advertised. It isn't doing any kind of breakfast, not even a continental breakfast, much less the full breakfast that was advertised (and the apparently haven't been doing the breakfast at all since the pandemic got started which would be sometime in March last year. But their website hasn't been updated to reflect reality).

 

When my wife was explaining to the hotel manager that the cat got loose outside during the fire alarm, his reply was, "No one told you to go outside" which didn't sit well at all with my wife who was somewhere on the hysterical scale at the time. The whole point of a fire alarm is to tell people to leave the burning building as far as I know. I'd argue that exchange with the manager had a large part to do with why she had an asthma attack and fell but that's neither here nor there at this point.

 

The hotel is part of the Windham chain. I don't remember offhand who owns them but my impression had been that it was a nice company.

 

Anyway, typing is a bit of catharsis. I probably need to take another stab at walking around outside, to check on my daughter if nothing else.

 

Thanks for your thoughts and prayers. And thanks for those of you with the patience to listen.

 

Gotta go.

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Wish I lived anywhere in the area to help you, man. Best wishes and Prayers. I have stayed in my share of wyndham hotels, they also are part of the time share we own, and always found them clean and nice. Sorry your having apparently a bad experience there. You should, in all seriousness, look in the lobby for where they want there reviews and post the experience, though maybe wait till you leave. I guarantee there upper management will pay attention, as they were working hard over the last 5 years or so to boost their hotel chain.

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Hi, sorry to have been missing for a few days after hitting so many dramatic notes. My computer died but has been resurrected.

 

We're out of the hotel and back home. Plumbing repaired and we have electricity.

 

The cleanup of our flooded room hasn't started yet but we have the ok from the insurance company to proceed.

 

My kid's car was totaled, which wasn't a huge shock at this point.

 

My cat is still missing and we've had to give up the physical search. Luckily our vet had a copy of the pet ID microchip number and distributed that to local shelters for us. I'm doing daily looks at the websites for the two most likely cities' animal shelter websites and the ASPCA shelters since you never know if the microchip will stay inside the pet. I don't hold out a lot of hope but unlikely things happen all the time...like the events of the last week.

 

My wife can walk some now and is in significant pain.

 

The hotel is still refusing to pay any of her doctor bills saying that it was her fault that she went outside during a fire alarm onto the unlit fire exit which they'd made no effort to clear of ice. The multiple lawyers my wife has contacted said we have absolutely no case. I've advised my wife to quit trying to deal with the local manager and to try to deal with someone at their corporate HQ who might be willing to spend the few thousand dollars just to make the problem go away.

 

My wife is swarmed under with paperwork that I'm not physically/mentally able to help her with. 

 

Neither of my kids were able to work over the last week. My oldest, who was in the car wreck, is scheduled to be out until at least the 27th. Some of that is unpaid leave and some of that are vacation days off that she'd scheduled prior to the February from Hell. She's in pain and is in discomfort when trying to lean over. She's tried to find some doctor's office that's open but without success so far. Even the doctor her work uses for work-related evaluations hasn't been open.

 

My youngest is on the schedule to work later this week. The last day that she was able to work, her restaurant deliberately screwed her out of $100 or more in tips. They let her work waitressing until she made just enough tips that the restaurant wouldn't be obligated to pay any extra out of pocket to bring her up to minimum wage. Then they pulled her from waitressing and put her in the back getting orders ready for the other waitresses to take out to the customers, which is a job that's normally part of each waitress's own job. So it resulted in speeding up how quickly those other waitresses got tip money from customers while simultaneously screwing my daughter out of getting tips on what had been the restaurant's busiest day EVER (up to that point at least) since it was one of only a handful of businesses in the city which was open. She wasn't happy about how she was treated to say the least. But having to deal with all of the family emergencies has at least gotten her some perspective to her anger.

 

There's likely more news or at least misery to impart but my mind's a blank at the moment. Yeah, my mind being a blank doesn't often slow me down from typing but apparently today is an extraordinary day.

 

Yesterday and today, I've been busy with unpacking, laundry, and general cleanup. I'm not in the best frame of mind at the moment. In my heart, I want to be out looking for my cat. But my body is beyond exhausted so that's not an option. My last lap around the hotel was more like a death march and I seriously doubted my ability to make it back to the room unassisted. And I've pushed myself a lot in the hours since then just getting back home and getting settled in rather than being able to get any meaningful amount of rest.

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Does your youngest work with split pay? I don't know about the labor law in Texas, but here in NC, a restaurant in Charlotte was pulling waitresses to roll silverware and not paying them the minimum wage. They did that to the wrong woman, and she sued and won

CES    

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1 minute ago, csyphrett said:

Does your youngest work with split pay? I don't know about the labor law in Texas, but here in NC, a restaurant in Charlotte was pulling waitresses to roll silverware and not paying them the minimum wage. They did that to the wrong woman, and she sued and won

CES    

 

All the work she was doing was work that is exclusively done by waitstaff.

 

She makes a sub-minimum wage plus tips. If those together don't add up to minimum wage for the pay period, the employer is legally required to pay her the difference to ensure she makes at least exactly minimum wage.

 

What they do to screw the employees is to track their tips as they're received throughout the day. And if their tips get up to the amount so that for the day they've been paid at least minimum wage, the boss might pull the person to do duties which don't involve actually interacting with customers. Legally, from what I can tell, the business is doing more than the law requires since it is making sure the minimum is made per day (rather than per pay period) before pulling them.

 

This hasn't happened to my daughter for a significant stretch of time since she was very new at the place. And supposedly it happened this particular day only because the other waitstaff were very new and hadn't been trained to do anything other than carry the food to the person who ordered it. It might even be true.

 

The irksome part was because the place where she works normally isn't very busy. She probably could have made 3 average days worth of tips if she'd been allowed to interact with customers and likely could have done better than that.

 

By state law neither the business nor the waitstaff are allowed to inform customers that the waitstaff are working for tips. The perception of most customers is that since it's "more fast food than fine dining" that the employees are actually paid by the restaurant rather than depending on tips. So tips aren't as plentiful as they probably would be otherwise. And missing the opportunity to get tips is more devastating than it would be otherwise.

 

After COVID, I'm going to try again to convince her to get work elsewhere. If she wants to be a waitress, she could make more almost anywhere else. Or better, she could go back and finish college if she ever figures out what she wants to do as a career.

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I gave some more thought to the situation with your daughter while I was at work, Archer. In my opinion, her boss is stealing from her depending on the local labor laws. Here in NC, wait staff can be paid below minimum wage as long as they are waiting tables. As soon as they are off the floor, they are supposed to be paid the minimum. That's my own situation. A lot of restaurant people try to get around it by claiming wait staff's tips make up the difference, but that's not how it works, at least not here.

 

Let's say the minimum is 7 dollars, and I get paid 6 on the road. (I'm using round numbers because I don't want to deal with the change. Also regular wait staff can be paid as low as 2.15.) So I work six hours, 3 on and 3 off. My hourly would be 21 + 18 which is $39. If the company didn't pay me being off the road, I could turn and sue for lost wages. Naturally the company would retaliate since this is a right to work state and an employee can be fired for any reason.

 

The moment I'm not getting tipped is the moment they are supposed to pay the minimum.

  

I feel that you should ask your daughter what she wants to do. If she wants to sue, she is going to have to put a logbook together. If she reports the guy, there's a good chance she will be fired. If she wants to quit, now is the time to start looking around. 

 

The reason the guy is counting her tip money is so he can steal her wages.

CES    

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   Things should get better soon.  I sacrificed a chicken to that Voodoo God you ticked off, so he’d let up on you......Or should that have been a goat?  Oh, well either way we’ll know soon enough.
   Let the folks know if they hear thunder and all they can find of you is a scorch mark and some smoldering sneakers where you used to be that I’ll get right on that goat thing.

    Hang tough, try to remember the words of the great Zen philosopher Bo-Zo.....”Just keep laughing!”

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On 2/23/2021 at 12:35 AM, csyphrett said:

I gave some more thought to the situation with your daughter while I was at work, Archer. In my opinion, her boss is stealing from her depending on the local labor laws. Here in NC, wait staff can be paid below minimum wage as long as they are waiting tables. As soon as they are off the floor, they are supposed to be paid the minimum. That's my own situation. A lot of restaurant people try to get around it by claiming wait staff's tips make up the difference, but that's not how it works, at least not here.

 

Let's say the minimum is 7 dollars, and I get paid 6 on the road. (I'm using round numbers because I don't want to deal with the change. Also regular wait staff can be paid as low as 2.15.) So I work six hours, 3 on and 3 off. My hourly would be 21 + 18 which is $39. If the company didn't pay me being off the road, I could turn and sue for lost wages. Naturally the company would retaliate since this is a right to work state and an employee can be fired for any reason.

 

The moment I'm not getting tipped is the moment they are supposed to pay the minimum.

  

I feel that you should ask your daughter what she wants to do. If she wants to sue, she is going to have to put a logbook together. If she reports the guy, there's a good chance she will be fired. If she wants to quit, now is the time to start looking around. 

 

The reason the guy is counting her tip money is so he can steal her wages.

CES    

 

Pulling from memory (I haven't worked in food service in a.. lot.. of years), when I was a manager in a restaurant, if I had to pull a server from the floor for different duties I also had to change their status in the payroll and adjust their rate of pay.  However, something like rolling silverware was a standard duty for servers - so it wasn't something I needed to change in payroll, but it was also something all servers were expected to do whenever they weren't dealing with their tables.

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2 hours ago, Tom said:

 

Pulling from memory (I haven't worked in food service in a.. lot.. of years), when I was a manager in a restaurant, if I had to pull a server from the floor for different duties I also had to change their status in the payroll and adjust their rate of pay.  However, something like rolling silverware was a standard duty for servers - so it wasn't something I needed to change in payroll, but it was also something all servers were expected to do whenever they weren't dealing with their tables.

That's what i'm saying. Archer's daughter should not have her tips counted as her day's wages. The Federal law is already saying that a restaurant has to pay the hourly and they can only pay two dollars an hour if the wait staff is making at least five dollars an hour in tips.

 

If she is working five hours a day, she needs five dollars an hour to be charged at anything lower than the minimum. The moment she is off the floor and not making money is the moment the manager has to pay her the minimum wage. It's not as soon as you make twenty five dollars, you go wash dishes the rest of your shift. As soon as she starts washing dishes, she supposed to be getting paid seven dollars an hour.

 

This is what was going on at the hickory tavern. Wait staff were pulled off their tables to do other things and stopped waiting on customers, but the manager was not adjusting the pay rate. One of the waitresses put together a logbook and sued the crap out of the chain.

 

https://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/article93473872.html

CES  

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