Line cook Roxroy Smith has been working in the food service business since his teenage years. He has spent over 10 years aboard cruise ships cooking his way around the world. During his time aboard ships he has visited 115 countries, often with as many as 2,700 staff from 88 nations, who all must speak English. This experience has not only afforded him a great opportunity to learn, but allowed him to build a flawless reputation for reliability and credibility. His credentials allow Roxy, as he is hailed by coworkers and friends, to travel without question and to work in highly desirable settings here in Maine, around the U.S. and internationally.
Roxy began work at Brown’s Wharf Inn when Ken Brown was still in the power chair. Roxy had great respect for Ken welcoming his advice and support. Roxy is much admired and deeply appreciated by the Brown family. “They are good people,” he told me as staff began to filter into the kitchen at Brown’s during my visit with him.
I noticed something rather interesting as kitchen staff began their chores, closing up breakfast and preparing things for the evening meal. When they looked at Roxy they started to smile. Local and seasonal employees at Brown’s seemed to react to Roxy, without words, in a similar way. Interesting.
When I mentioned this to Roxy he smiled, his large and genuine smile. “You must be happy in your work,” he said. “Smiling opens the veins in the neck,” he said, running his hands toward his chest. “It is good for the heart. You see, these people look at me and smile. I don’t even need to speak.”
Roxy reflects the philosophy of his Jamaican elders. “I was taught to be positive and to respect others, to be kind and to never treat anyone badly.” He shared that his family and people he respected told him that your behavior in this life will determine the life you come back to after death. If you are not kind in this life, it will not be pleasant for you. It is motivation to be a good person.
From what I can tell, Roxy has listened to the advice he was offered growing up. I think we all could benefit from this philosophy as we smile more frequently and help our hearts.