Words From The Road

It’s mostly the travel that I hate in my job. I’d much rather be at home, able to pursue projects at home and volunteering with the library and literacy program, instead of mouldering in a hotel room in such fortresses of culture as Modesto or Riverside.

But there are some good parts to the job; those are mostly the people that I work with. When you’re sitting in a community services building doling out shell polishing kits to bleary-eyed mollusks by the hundreds, your down time can get downright surreal. Beyond Seinfeld surreal.

I had this conversation the other day with N. during a five-minute lull between classes:

N.: My pen ran out of ink at the client check-in table just now.

Me: That sucks. What did you do?

N.: Well, I borrowed A.’s pocketknife and started having the mollusks sign their paperwork with my blood.

Me: Yeah, I thought you were looking a little pale.

Things like that.

I handed a form to A. once, and the following conversation ensued:

A.: (Handing the paper to N.) I have no idea what this is supposed to be.

N: (Handing it back to me) What is it, anyway?

A: It’s almost as if you have absolutely no business training at all.

Me: (handing the paper back to A.) You know, I don’t even really work here.

A.: (Handing the paper one last time to N.) That’s what makes this so hard.

Bonus points to you if you can figure out what scene we were reliving.

When you’ve been at the training site since 7:30 and it’s now 2:30 in the afternoon and you’ve been on your feet, constantly moving around, with only 30 minutes to sit down for lunch and far too much coffee, weird things just seem to start happening.

Starting next week, I’m going to be in Riverside County for three solid weeks, including one full weekend; and every working day, including that Saturday, is going to be from 10 to 7. And the training site is supposedly 40 miles away from the hotel.

Yeah. This is just going to keep getting weirder.