Labor Day is all in a day’s work for some

MOSS BLUFF — Tammie Whitman’s work shift started at 3:30 a.m. Monday morning, frying eggs to make the croissant breakfast sandwiches that line the display cases at The Donut Palace.

“After that I filled the éclairs and the round donuts and got the biscuits ready,” she said as she filled a box full of a dozen glazed donuts for a drive-thru customer.

Whitman was one of millions of Americans who spent Labor Day laboring.

The United States labor force has grown from 60.1 million in January 1948 to 163.4 million in July 2019, according to government statistics. On Monday, about 34 percent of them were expected to work.

“Today has been a good day and the people have been friendly,” Whitman said. “It’s not as busy as I thought it would be but it has been a nice morning.”

The Donut Palace — which opened at 4 a.m. Monday before the sun had risen — was being overseen by a staff of four who moved steadily around each other, filling orders and taking turns making iced coffees. Their shifts were set to end at noon.

“It’s been a nice day and I don’t mind working,” Whitman said. “Our first visitors of the day were a family who were going crabbing and they were really excited.”

Down the road at Circle K on U.S. 171, which has been open less than a full week, Kaegan Hayes was refilling the cooler with individually wrapped cups of diced peaches.

“It’s been busier than normal,” she admitted. “People are off today so they’re coming in more than normal.”

Hayes said she was working a 12-hour shift on Monday, 6 a.m.-6 p.m., but said she didn’t mind because she was receiving time and half pay.

“I like it because I stay busy so the time goes by fast. It’s just one thing after another,” she said with a laugh.””

Tammie Whitman of The Donut Palace in Moss Bluff, started her Labor Day shift at 3:30 a.m. She was just one of millions of Americans who spent the holiday working.

Crystal StevensonEditor
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