What happens when you go to office after almost 3 weeks of working from home followed by 2 weeks of vacation time?
a) You wonder if your ID card still works. When it does, you sigh a relief 😉
b) The chair in your location is already taken by someone else and you have to go hunting for another one from one of the conference rooms
c) You wonder when the name paper that is put up on your place was removed. Not that I put it up in the first place but I think it was removed sometime back, even though I can’t remember when. I know one of my project manager who is based in a different building always uses my work place when I ain’t in office. I suspect it to be his work. He is the only one who is pissed off when I go to office.
d) The toilets seemed too new to be good, which makes you wonder if they were ever that new looking or if they have done something there. I found out in the evening that all the toilets have been refurbished.
e) You expect the food in the cafeteria to be suddenly all exciting with a lot of options. Sadly, they remained the same, both in quality and in options. Lost hope there.
f) Your lunch mates ask if you had traveled abroad to HQ (office headquarters in US) for work. When I tell them, I was just working from home to get a project done at a short notice, they look at me like I am joking. But they don’t know how glad I was when I could finish the work without having to waste my time travelling to and from office.
Except for meeting my friends and catching up on our lives, it wasn’t that exciting anyway and it didn’t really matter to me with respect to work. The only advantage at this time if I go to office is that I wouldn’t end up over using my broadband at home. 😉
My office car parking isn’t all that great. But there are three levels (including the ground level) and I usually park my car on the first level where one section has double parking in it. And I happened to park there because it is closer to the lift and easy to park too. The ‘request’ that is put up by the security team in a small paper that is glued to the wall for those people who end up double parking behind a car to leave their keys with the security/driver so that in case of need they can move the cars and not trouble the owner/drivers.
Day before yesterday I wanted to leave home a bit early because it was getting very cloudy and it looked like it was going to rain very heavily and I didn’t want to get stuck in traffic for hours when that happened. So I go to the parking lot by 4.15 pm and I see a car parked behind mine. No other cars are double parked else where. Just that one car behind my car. Just My luck (no, not the movie title!) I check with security to get them to move the car. He goes and checks and comes back to tell me that the owner/driver of that car hasn’t left the keys with them. WTH. OK! (deep breathing) I asked him to find the employee to whom the car belongs to (they should have a database even though I wasn’t very sure of it. The last time I had registered my vehicle with their system was around 5 years ago) and he says ‘no, maam. There is no such database anymore.’ OK! (shallow breaths) I asked him to get the facilities team manager or the security manager pronto. I have never ever raised my voice with service people, because most of the time they try their best to do their duty and are often the scapegoats for the mismanagement from the higher officials. When the facilities and security manager (both of them in fact) turned up, I explained them my situation and asked them to figure out a way to get my car out. I was packed on three sides by cars and by wall on the other side.
They tried to figure out the owner of the car using the registration number but ended up nowhere. It was registered in a name that wasn’t in the employee database. I was rolling my eyes. Did they really think that everyone uses cars that were registered in their own names? Hell, I have been using a car which was in my dad’s name for almost 5 years now. After me pestering them and them finding no other way, they made an announcment in the system used only for emergencies asking the owner / driver of the car to come to the parking lot immediately. It was already half an hour past by then. We then waited for 15-20 mins more. No response. They were fiddling their thumbs and thinking what to do next. I was all for reversing my car with full force and hitting the double parked car and damaging it. I would have done that if I didn’t have so many witnesses. I even asked them if they would look the other way round if I did that 😉 One guy told me that it would be futile because the hand brakes were on and that stunt would end up damaging my car more than anything.
Then they sent an email to the list which has all the employees registered in it. No response either. A couple of employees came down to check out what the deal was that made these people announce and send an email. It was already 45 mins past then. Finally, when it was close to an hour, everyone lost their patience and they were getting the scale and screwdriver to open the window or call the towing service to tow the car. They got their tools and were about to try and remove the beading on the window, when the owner of the car next to mine came down, looked at us and hurriedly took out his car. Now the car to my right was moved out and I had enough space to take mine out by squeezing it in. It was a tough one and took a lot of manoeuvering but finally we all did it. It was more than an quarter and an hour by then. Yet still we couldn’t figure out the owner of the double parked car.
I came home after struggling through the peak time traffic, which was my purpose of starting home early and wrote a very strong email to the management about the loop hole in their system for managing situations like this and the fact that this was the second time I was facing this, except that this time it was more than an hour of everyone’s time that was wasted. All because of one idiot who did not have the common sense to leave the keys or his number with the security and didn’t bother to respond to the calls/emails. I wanted to write “Shame!” using a marker on his car, but unfortunately none was available with anyone at that time.
Makes it extra tastier when we order it online and get it delivered to the office, share it with your friend in the cafeteria leaving everyone else wondering ‘where the hell these two women got this from’ and sending us some stinky eyes. bwahaha!
At my office, the women’s day celebrations happen every year. I used to attend it mainly for the free snacks. Trust me, the speech and the talks were always very boring and it would put me to sleep immediately. But this year I really enjoyed it. They had some games, quizzes, impromptu catwalk etc. And I won that crystal candle when I correctly identified a celebrity from a distorted photo. It went on for an hour and a half and almost by the end of it, we all were quite hungry (it was our usual tea time). Thank God, they had some snacks ready for us. But overall it was a good one and the effort was commendable.
You know how they say
“There is nothing better than a friend, unless it is a friend with chocolate.”
― Linda Grayson
Imagine my surprise when I was hand delivered this packet of chocolates sent by my friends in the US through a colleague who is visiting India. My friends are the best 🙂