Thursday, November 4, 2021

Cold hands, warm heart

Winter has arrived in South Carolina, with blustery winds and gray skies and temperatures a good bit colder than normal for the early part of November. The high today was only 50 degrees (10 degrees for you Celsius peeps) and tonight the low is 39 (or 3.88C). I'm looking forward to lighting the fireplace for the first time this weekend, and also making the first batch of chili for the year. Yesterday afternoon Little P. was standing beside my desk at work, and he noticed the old, soft sweater I'd put on to fight off the chill. 

"You have a hole in your sweater" he said, pointing. 

I explained that what he was pointing at was just one of the buttonholes. He then proceeded to carefully fasten the buttons all the way down the front for me. I said, "P----, what are you doing?" 

"Buttoning you up. It's cold outside."

My heart melted. That little boy is such a gem. 

Speaking of Little P. hanging out at my desk, this week brought a big change to my work situation. The school principal and the man in charge of security for the district finally got a  front door camera/unlocking device installed in the lobby. A new, larger desk had been ordered and set up out there before Covid hit, but without cameras and a way to unlock the front doors no one could work from there. When I got to work on Monday morning, Mr. Oates told me that I'd be moving out there now that we had the doors and security sorted. I was really surprised. Within the hour, the technology department sent out a guy to move my computer, monitors, phone, intercom, and scanner to the new desk and I was ready to roll.

Which means, of course, that I no longer have to work beside the gossipy, backbiting, and lazy office women who were making me so unhappy! I'm now working from a spacious lobby area, with a view of the goldfish aquarium, and much closer access to teachers and students than I've ever had before. It's almost like those women who were driving me crazy no longer exist. They're hidden away inside the inner offices, and I'm fine with that. I'm so much happier! What a stroke of luck.

My new desk with the sweater Little P. "buttoned me up" into draped over my chair:

A few teachers and other staff members have hinted that they're happy that I've moved, too, and now they can bypass the main office and come straight to me when they need something. One even said, "You're the only one who ever made me feel welcome in there. The others are rude." So it definitely wasn't just me!

I like the change for more reasons than just being away from the office ladies, though. I've enjoyed having the custodians, students, teachers, aides, therapists, etc. etc. coming and going all day, being friendly and stopping to chat and making me feel welcome in my new spot. Two teenaged girls have been stopping by my desk sometimes to talk about the goldfish. They claim they can tell the boys and girls apart, and they've given five of the nine names: Vinny, Jacob, Kenny, Thelma, and Felicia. Haha!

 I have a feeling I'm going to have some fun in my new spot. I'm already enjoying myself out there, even if the lobby is a bit drafty and cold in the winter. I'll be keeping the sweater handy, and maybe I'll even get a small electric kettle for making cups of hot tea at my desk. 

November is off to a good start.


  1. Sounds lovely for you - if it gets cold could you get a little heater to put near your feet or would that not be allowed out of school finances.

    1. I would have to buy it myself, but I've already considered a tiny space heater for under my desk!

  2. Nice office space! Big, airy, and bright!

  3. This is such terrific news! I was absolutely thinking of you today, wishing that you could get away from the mean girls. And you have! Hurray!

  4. Oh, Jennifer! I'm so happy for you! It's a lot easier to put on a sweater than it is to ignore gossips.

  5. The gossipy, backbiting, and lazy office women are going to be jealous. I know the type, and that's how they react.

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  7. That is wonderful news! I love your new space and I can tell you will be much happier!

  8. I was going to say the same as Pat about a small heater for your foot space.
    Jennifer, I am so happy about this change for you! Since I have only a few weeks ago finally ended a work situation I was deeply unhappy with, I know how liberating that feels - almost as if you have your life back :-)
    Little P. never fails to make me laugh, or smile (like in this instance)!

  9. So pleased that you now have a much nicer work space away from the nasties!
    We had a frost last night here in SE England...the 2nd this week.

  10. You must feel like you can finally breathe free. Clearly, others are happy to engage you without the motley crew nearby. Good excuse to buy a few warmer clothing items (and a small heater). :)

  11. A very nice setting. And you’ll now be in the center of everything. So much more pleasant and interesting. Your popularity is about to soar!

  12. I'm loving this new cold weather here in SC.

    Love your new space, and I imagine how nice it is without the hens clucking all around you.

  13. That's a great solution to your problem! Glad for you!

  14. Congrats on your new work situation -- that's super! Enjoy your freedom!

  15. VINNY Who is that woman out there?
    THELMA You mean the one behind the desk?
    VINNY Yeah, her.
    THELMA Oh that's Mrs Barlow. She runs the school.
    VINNY You mean she's the school principal?
    THELMA Sumpin like that Vinny. That's why they gave her a throne.

  16. I love your new spot. Your section of the lobby has clearly become the heart of the school. Kids in my previous school would have loved everything about your new office space...the fish tank, the cozy couch and most of all, a dose of compassion from the woman behind the desk.

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  18. That is excellent. I hope if those two ever need anything you will tell them to "come to my office, and we'll talk about it".

  19. I straight away thought of doors opening and cold coming in, but otherwise it sounds great.

  20. That's excellent! I'm so glad you have your own "territory" and you're now seeing more school life. My desk is right out in the middle of the library and, like you, I enjoy being in an open, visible place.

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  22. Such good news! I'm thrilled that you're away from those two.


  23. How sweet! That's a great new spot and a change for the better in many ways.