“After four and half years without work it was unbelievable. Totally unexpected, when you’re over 50, to get a glimpse of a little bit of light….”
“After four and half years without work it was unbelievable. Totally unexpected, when you’re over 50, to get a glimpse of a little bit of light. No one wants people who are 53 years old,” say Rafael, immaculate in waistcoat and bow tie, behind the bar of Entrepanes Díaz in Barcelona.
Rafael’s glimpse of light came when a friend told him that a new bar was opening and that the owner was looking for staff who were over 50.
“I was looking for waiters who are over 50 because I knew they’d be fantastic and because society has unjustly pushed them out of the job market,” says the bar’s owner Kim Díaz. “These guys have 20 or 30 years of experience, a lifetime. Here the waiter’s profession is in decline but the people I’ve employed see it as a vocation.”
He says the interviews were a nightmare as they had 845 applicants for five places. Candidates were interviewed jointly by Díaz and his friend Antxón Gómez who worked as art director on a number of Pedro Almodóvar’s films and who helped to design the bar.
Díaz says he chose Gomez because of his acute perception of people’s character.
“It was hard to choose because I would have taken on 80% of the people we interviewed,” Díaz says. “The light in their eyes, their enthusiasm, their experience – I’ve never seen anything like it.”
“They only interviewed me for two minutes and I got the job,” says Rafael. “We had a chat, they looked at my CV and I was in.”
Read the full article in The Guardian by Stephen Burgen