Now that I’m kind of retired and doing this journalism thing, Tribune readers like to stop me at the Kroger in Kingwood to tell me about their bad customer service. Bored fast food workers who apparently hate their jobs. Retail clerks who don’t seem to know anything about what they’re selling. Creatures on the other end of the cell phone who, you can just feel it, are rolling their eyes while you explain your problem.
“People say customer service is dead. Actually, it isn’t. It’s just hiding behind a call center in Manila.” I stole that quote from a journalist named Timothy Noah. Funny. Kind of true.
Not in Lake Houston, though. I have three great examples.
First kudos to Keydy Diaz. Yup, that’s how she spells her name. She’s the nurse practitioner at RediClinic at the H-E-B in Atascocita. My left ear was all clogged up with ear wax. Gross. You’d think my body would over-produce testosterone but no, it cranks out the ear wax. I don’t deal with it until I hear my voice reverberating in my head. Cover your ears and talk. That’s what it sounds like.
When I couldn’t stand it any more, I called Memorial Hermann’s Town Center location. I knew my doc was on vacation but he’s got a terrific medical assistant and she snuck me onto the schedule. Then she went a step further. “I know the appointment is a couple days away,” she said. “Why don’t you try RediClinic. Memorial Hermann is affiliated with them. I’ll bet they can fit you in today.”
The Atascocita H-E-B RediClinic had the earliest appointment. That’s where I met the kindly Nurse Diaz. Within minutes – and a lot of water pressure – she had that left ear back to its pristine condition. Those voices reverberating in my head were gone.
Then there is Cathy at the Whataburger on Northpark. Don’t have her last name. That’s all her nametag said. She didn’t roll her eyes once while I rambled on about how tough it is for a vegetarian to eat at Whataburger. “Have you thought about the grilled cheese? I love it,” she said.
Behind her sincere-looking eyes she may have thought she was talking to a Bozo but those eyes conveyed sincerity. She was going to help me find a meal at Whataburger! The grilled cheese, by the way, was tasty. I’ve become somewhat of an expert on them and Whataburger is at the top in flavor, especially when you dip it in Whataburger spicy ketchup. Yum.
Finally, there is Alspaugh’s Ace Hardware. I’ve got to move them into the Tall Tales Hall of Fame because those guys and gals at the desk up front just never disappoint. I walk in trying to describe my broken doo-hickey and they know exactly what I’m talking about – and help me fix it!
Customer service is alive and well in Lake Houston!
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