ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC)- Over the past year due to the pandemic restaurants around the Key City have been struggling to make ends meet, and this winter storm did not make things any easier.
“We actually had one of our customers call this morning, and was ecstatic over the phone that we were open,” said The Flipping Egg General Manager William Bowling.
After being closed for five days The Flipping Egg reopened on Friday. Before they opened their doors to the public those at the restaurant noticed a laundry list of problems the winter storm left behind.
“We actually got water in, and as it went through, we ended up busting one of our pipes. So we had to get the plumbers out here to fix it for us,” said Bowling.
Bowling says the damages cost roughly $2,000 to repair. In addition to the loss of water and bursting pipes, the loss of power caused an even bigger problem.
“Pretty much all of the food we had in our refrigerator and our freezer we had to get rid of. Safety issue and also not having power, we want to make sure our product is fresh,” said Bowling.
When any small business closes for almost a week, the closure has financial implications for the future of the business and its ability to pay its employees.
“I just got this job, so it was really, really hard not knowing if I’ll be able to come to work, and when I’ll be able work,” said waitress Salena Paiz.
“Waiting staff come in and they work off their tips and stuff like that. So a lot of them work day to day trying to pay all their bills,” Bowling.
Salena Paiz started waiting tables at The Flipping Egg three weeks ago. For her the combination of not being able to earn money at work, and not having access to water in her apartment has made it difficult for her to care for her five children.
“The water situation kind of had a lot of issues. Not only for me at home because I cook at home, I do have five kids, so knowing that they had finally got their water here (The Flipping Egg) and got it fixed is great because I know that if I needed to I could get something here and bring home to my kids,” said Paiz.
Owner of The Flipping Egg Tammy Reese says, the impact of the storm on her restaurant and her employees felt like a “kick in the shin.”
Reese is happy they are back open to provide an outlet for people in Abilene dealing with the hardships of this unprecedented situation.
“You can tell that some people were just relieved to get that one good cooked meal, that they couldn’t probably do at home with no electricity and no water,” said Paiz.
While Abilene is still under a boiling notice, The Flipping Egg is boiling water to cook safely, and they are using a four-part-filtration system for their soda.