More news from the Argonaut. Here's a excerpt that addresses a couple of things we've been discussing here, but you really should read the full entry:
Today was a big day. Our storage "Pod" and dumpster were delivered early this morning. Hooray, right? Unfortunately, both insurance people told us not to start cleaning anything up, so we can't actually use either of them. Grumble.
Turns out we were realistic to think it was going to take a long time with the insurance companies, but apparently we were wrong about why. The insurance people would like a corporate "fire restoration team" to come and give an estimate on the costs of the clean-up. And then have them do the cleaning themselves. They are also requesting that an independent "Cause of Origin" person/team(?) come and do a separate investigation.
It's frustrating, because we can't start moving forward and cleaning up (and let me tell you, our beloved Argo is beginning to smell a little...ripe), but it is probably also good for us in terms of an insurance payment. We recently renewed our insurance policy and they had to sign off on our establishment's safety. Plus, our electrician AND both insurance people seem to unofficially think they know what the cause was - and we are not at fault.
What does this mean? Well, we can't pay our staff (or anybody else) to do any cleaning (because we're not allowed to do any cleaning or restoration) so all funds raised at next Wednesday's event will go into an Argonaut Employee Fund. As you can imagine, our full-time staff are feeling a little devastated. We really are a family, and we're missing each other.
And worse? We're possibly looking at $100,000 in damages to our "personal" property (equipment and such). Again, we'll find out more when everybody is finished with their investigations.
Positives? Scott also got a call from the Fire Chief himself saying that he hopes to get us a report by Thursday (and not in 14 days like we had heard). This is great news, because we can't move forward on any demo/rebuilding without that. Also, we really appreciate their help. Apparently, there were eight other fires that day and I can't imagine having to go through this without the support of you all.
As many of you know, we are applying to change our license from a restaurant to a tavern, just so we can get open. We can't get open without revenue. And we can't generate revenue without changing our license from a CR to a CT (since we no longer have a kitchen).
Elise from FrozenTropics told us that a couple people are concerned that we will continue to be a bar after the rebuild. We have NO DESIRE to remain a bar. We have no idea how long it will take to rebuild the kitchen, but AS SOON as that happens, we'll be requesting to change back. If nothing else, we have an amazing kitchen staff who would like to be put back to work. AND, we LIKE eating at The Argonaut. (Although I have to say that not eating my weight in my daughter's mac&cheese and fries EVERY NIGHT is making my clothes fit better!)
And even if that takes a little bit, we'll still be The Argonaut. In probably the most dreadful television interview known to history, Scott and I both struggled and stumbled to express why The Argonaut is so special (in tonight's Channel 8 piece). I always tell people, it's because everyone is always welcome at The Argonaut. We have worked hard to keep The Argonaut low-key, laid-back and the kind of place where we'd want to go if we were the patrons.
For those of you who know us? You know us. We're not a faceless corporation, we're neighbors. I bought my house (on Linden Place - two and a half blocks from Argo) in 2000. We're invested in this neighborhood and here for the long haul.