57°F
weather icon Clear

Being ‘invisible’ has its downfalls

Interstate 11 opened a week ago with plenty of fanfare and hearty congratulations for a job well done.

It is well-deserved. The highway is beautiful with its metal sculptures depicting the city’s history and building of Hoover Dam and colorful landscaping that blends into the surrounding mountains.

It’s a smooth and easy ride for travelers, with the promise of cutting as much as 30 minutes off their trip.

Not only does it consider the needs of drivers traveling between Las Vegas and Phoenix, which will eventually be connected by the interstate, it provides safe crossings for wildlife in the area — a few of which were on hand to witness the grand opening celebration.

Within days of the opening, you could see fewer big trucks driving through town. That was the intention of the bypass.

While that’s a good thing and should encourage locals to venture out on Boulder City Parkway/U.S. Highway 93 more often, it also means that businesses will need to pay attention to their customers, especially with the prospect of losing thousands of passersby each day.

Several times in the past week I experienced such poor service that I have to seriously consider whether I want to continue patronizing these establishments.

While I realize that I am short in stature and can sometimes be difficult to see on the other side of tall counters, that’s no excuse for me to be ignored. Perhaps I developed the superpower of invisibility. Or, more likely, businesses are not training their employees about good customer service.

Twice, in two different stores, the cashier left the register to return hand-held baskets to their place by the entrance, leaving me waiting to pay. It was like I wasn’t there at all, even though at one store I literally had to move out of the way for the cashier to retrieve the basket.

In both instances, the cashiers found someone to stop and talk to, delaying their return to the register for at least a minute — though it felt like an eternity.

Another incident occurred at the service deli of a grocery store. There were four people working behind the counter but only one helping the line of customers. When the employee finished helping the person ahead of me in line, instead of calling the next number to be served, she went into the back. Eventually, she came back and called my number, but by that time the line had doubled and others were starting to grumble about the lack of service. One woman became so frustrated she left without getting anything.

I had a similar experience at a nearby casino’s buffet. I went to get a sweet treat to end my meal and was the only one waiting. The worker behind the counter finished helping the person who was already there and then began cleaning and restocking the display case, leaving me standing there.

Granted, not all of these experiences were in Boulder City. Yet they all show a need for treating customers with good service. Even something as simple as a comment that they saw me and would be right there would have gone a long way.

Normally, I am fairly patient with incidents such as these. However, to experience so many in such a short time pushed me over the limit.

I hope these were isolated incidents and that others in the community don’t feel invisible. For those of you taking the time to read this, please consider the impact your actions have on others. Remember to smile, acknowledge someone’s presence and make them feel welcome, especially if they are spending their hard-earned money at your establishment.

Hali Bernstein Saylor is editor of the Boulder City Review. She can be reached at hsaylor@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9523. Follow @HalisComment on Twitter.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
City’s past, future tied to lake

Lake Mead, the gem in Boulder City’s backyard, is losing its gleam.

Set goals for community, as a community

As a not so closeted optimist, I like to think about those things I’ve succeeded in and, because I hate the word “failed,” those things that I haven’t succeeded in during the new year. This year I worked my butt off, I read a ton of books, I wrote a lot of stories, I had one published and few opinions posted here. I went to some cool places and met some incredible people and taught a few classes of amazing people.

Shift to even-year elections produces some oddities

Our newest City Council members, Sherri Jorgensen and Matt Fox, took office only six months ago. So, it might seem much too early to start talking about city elections again. But this year marks a major change in Boulder City’s election cycle: a shift from odd-year elections to even-year elections. In other words, past city elections were held in odd-numbered years (for example, 2017, 2019 and 2021), but beginning this year they’ll take place in even years (2022, 2024 and so on).

Stick it to me

I’m in heaven today. That’s because it’s National Sticker Day. It’s a day that I can happily pay tribute to one of my favorite obsessions: stickers.

Reid was true friend to city

Few people know of the genius of Sen. Harry Reid. I was fortunate to get to know him from my position as mayor and council member of Boulder City. He was available to Boulder City residents and the citizens of Nevada regardless of which party they were affiliated with. I consider him to have been a friend.

Resolve to avoid resolutions

A new year. A new you. Making New Year’s resolutions to improve yourself or your life is a tradition that dates back thousands of years.

Path to move forward clear

I want to wish all the residents of Boulder City a new year that brings better times and allows us to move beyond the challenges and struggles we have had in the past year and more. We are tired and frustrated from the pandemic that has caused hardship and, for many, personal loss.

Memories made as time flies by

There are only a few hours left in 2021 and I don’t know how the others passed so quickly. It seems the older I get, the faster days fly by.

‘Twas the baking before Christmas

A few years ago, many readers commented how much they enjoyed my column about holiday baking and requested that I make this an annual tradition. Though my holiday baking has since expanded into the entire month of December so that more family and friends can enjoy the fruits of my labor, the true spirit of the message remains. I promise to stay knee-deep in flour, sugar and spices, and wish all a sweet holiday season and new year.

Diversity more systemic than racism

We live in the greatest country in the entire world. It has many inequalities and a number of negative attributes, but these are an exception, not the norm.