That’s what I keep telling myself day after day working in the Raws kitchen, but it seems like every week there’s a new ache or pain that doesn’t go away as quickly as when I was in my 20’s and 30’s. Sure, there are times when I push myself a little too hard. At age 64, most chefs and bakers have their own place, retired, or just don’t work as much as we did in our youth.
In my early days of the bakery business, the first place I worked was a well liked and respected bakery in Mercer County, NJ. I was in my mid 20’s and knew almost nothing of baking at the time. But there were 4 OLD men working there that took the time, one by one, to take me under their wing and show me how to do things the right way; wheather it was mixing batters or dough, bench work in rolling out Danish and puff pastry, or decorating cakes and other desserts. The years I spent there were better than any culinary school I attended. And I still have fond memories of those 4 men that I’m sure I will see in heaven.
Can you imagine what this world would be like if “THE OLD PEOPLE” of the Bible said “I’m too old to do that”? Noah was almost 600 years old when God asked him to build a boat. Moses was 80 years old when God asked him to take a 40-year walk through the desert. Abraham’s father was 200 years old when he decided to pack up the family and move. Abraham was 100 and Sarah 90 years old when they had Isaac. Zechariah and Elizabeth had John the Baptist in their old age.
Just think of the world without these wise older souls who will gladly take the time to teach the younger generations their crafts. Matthew 9:37-38 “Then He said to His disciples, the harvest is abundant, but the workers are few. Therefore, pray to the Lord of the harvest to send out workers to His harvest. The wisdom that we acquire over the years is a valuable resource to teach the younger generation on what it means to serve the almighty God.” Romans 9:12 “Not by works but by Him who calls we are told; the older will serve the younger.”
My role at Keswick is changing. I will prayerfully be taking men under my wing and teaching them the things I have learned while working 46 years, full-time, in the food service industry. I want them to be excited to doing things, not only for our guests but for God, in the little things. Things that we get to help the Colony men with in growing, not just as a men of God, but of a men of character and integrity.
I know that I will never fully retire. I hope to dabble in the food service industry, just on my terms and not someone else’s. And I pray God will put before a young person that is willing to whatever wisdom that I may be able to give them, cause I’m really not that old!
Written by Robert Breault: Robert is a full-time staff member serving anyone who’s hungry in the Food Service Department. He is married to Shirley Holmes-Breault who volunteers at the Colony of Mercy at the intake office. Robert and Shirley love the beach, Schroon Lake and their 3 Children and 2 Grandchildren.