Trying Out: Leasing Myself Out (Week Forty-Six)
I have had the same job for fourteen years. I had no desire to work up the corporate ladder. A few dollars more an hour is not enough for the amount of responsibility (and night shifts) I would take on. I liked the people I worked around, so why risk getting moved around on the company’s “development plan”? No, I am paid enough. I liked seeing the regular customers. I stayed put.
That is, until the hours became slim. I asked for thirty to thirty five hours a week. (More would be nice, but I am not greedy.) For the last few months, I had been scheduled twenty or so hours. I took some vacation, I kept quiet, but so did my bank account’s balance.
I work for a rather large company. Other work sites were not far off. So, for the sake of trying something new (and because my cat like to eat), I loaned myself out to another location.
I had nothing to prove. If asked, I mentioned how long I had been employed.
(No one likes braggart-boy. “Oh yeah. <scratch scratch> I’ve been around for more than a decade. <burp> I know pretty much everything there is to know. <scratch> You need anything, you ask for The Big Man. That’s me. <belch> Would you like me to show you how you’re doing everything wrong?” Humility works best; especially when you are a guest.)
Happily for everyone, someone I had worked with before was at this location. If the others had any questions about my abilities, they probably checked in with her. For the first four or so hours, I was mostly left to my own devices. Nobody bothered me, nobody hovered. They checked in on how I was doing once an hour or so. By and large, they trusted me to take care of things.
The location was not that far from a museum I had visited this year, so I knew there would be some nice scenery to take in on my lunch break. I walked up to a bench, noticed the goose droppings around me, and shook my head. Looking up, I saw another bird, perched precariously up in its branch.
“If you could not poop on me, that’d be great”, I said to the birdbrain.
It must have sensed my loathing for it and its ilk. Not too many minutes later, as I sat and enjoyed the blue sky with nary a rain cloud to be seen, I felt moisture fall on my neck.
Clearly, not everyone was overjoyed about me visiting a different branch. Stupid bird. (It was a small deposit; but still.)
I returned to work, engaged a few customers enjoying their leisurely Saturday, and spent the rest of the day working with my friend.
It was much easier than my normal shift. It was slower, and I knew if I worked there on a regular basis I would quickly be bored. Still, I appreciated how much these folks trusted a stranger to work for them. Trust goes a long way with me.
I proved to myself that I actually do know what I am doing, even in a mildly-foreign element. Since then, I have worked four shifts in four different stores. And my old job is still waiting for me, even after I tried something new.