A member of the Phoenicia team for 21 years, Ruth has seen a lot of changes in the store during that time. She started at Arpi’s Deli and has worked in many of the departments at Phoenicia. She eventually made her way to manager of the hot grill, where she is happiest. While Ruth has worked with so many great people, her favorite will always be Richard Willis. She loved working with Richard and was sad when he moved to the Phoenicia Downtown location. Ruth feels a family bond with her teammates and considers them her “work family.” Also feeling a bond with customers, Ruth has been their acquaintance for many years, often seeing kids grow up and bringing in their own children!
Ruth grew up in Mexico and remained there after her brothers had moved to Houston. She dreamed of coming to Houston and was so excited when she finally had a chance to move here, right away she began working as a cashier in a Mexican Café but she longed for more. She knew someone who was working at Phoenicia and they were very happy, they talked about their job in the most positive ways and it made her really want a job here but she wasn’t confident in her cooking or her language skills and was afraid it was going to be a challenge. When she finally applied, her desire to work was evident and she was hired, it was her dream come true! Ruth was excited in her new position and went to school to study and learn so she could be a stronger member of the Phoenicia Team.
Though different cultures and languages can sometimes be difficult, Ruth really tries to connect with customers. She is sympathetic to language boundaries and will often use her version of sign language to direct or satisfy a customer’s needs. In her wildest dreams she never thought she would learn so many customs! One thing she notes is that every country and nationality can agree on one thing…delicious food! She laughs as she says that everyone loves Shawarma! Shawarma was the first food she tried at Arpi’s. It is the healthiest sandwich. She smiles sheepishly as she said that on her second day she saw falafel and thought “What is that?!?” she nibbled a bite and fell in love with them! Her love of food is contagious and she wants everyone to share her passion. If she notices that people seem hesitant to try a shawarma she will describe it in ways they may relate to, in fact she often describes it like a burrito! And even though Ruth has worked here for so many years she NEVER gets tired of eating Shawarma!
Ruth dreams have been realized with a city and a job that she loves and she feels it just gets better and better. Ruth loves creating foods and is especially proud of the soup she makes for the hot grille menu, and she positively beams when she says, “I am proud of the job and I am happiest when Mr. Bob is happy!”
Ruth’s eyes sparkle and her smile is huge as she talks about Phoenicia. “Something holds you here”, she comments earnestly. The Tcholakian Family, the customers, her co-workers and Mr. Bob… they make you feel special.
Come experience the food and atmosphere that dreams are made of here, at Phoenicia!