Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Earlier this month, it was announced that after years of abandoned neglect, the Bella Vista restaurant in Cedar Crest, NM would soon be torn down. As you can see in the pics, the work has already begun.

Bella Vista was my first-ever paying job. I started as a busser in late-June 1993… almost 15 years ago, less one month. I was promoted to carrier exactly one month later, when the three other food carriers failed to come in to work on a busy Friday. I worked at Bella for about 20 months; I left in February 1995 -- I think… wow, your brain DOES fuzz out over the years -- to go to work at another restaurant, started by one of the waiters from Bella.

(Incidentally, what once was the Nob Hill Diner and Bakery is now a tattoo parlor; make of that whatever you will.)

Bella –- screaming Italian owners and all -- was a great first job. I met my first serious girlfriend there, as well as my best friend.

Destroyed so far is the North dining room – home to buffet lunches, and holiday banquets – and most of the 10,000 sq-ft kitchen area (I swear to God, I could STILL smell the all-you-can-eat chicken and fish… no doubt the result of ages of accumulated grease!) The rest of it is due to come down in the coming weeks.



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