December 19, 2003
Today is the last workday for Purple Systems in our current office; Monday we move to a new building. I’m spending today packing up the contents of the three desk drawers I haven’t gotten to yet and hoping that all the stuff I want to keep will fit in the one crate I managed to snag before the rest of them got used up. It’s been hard to work these last few days with all the added noise and confusion, much less reflect on what the move means.
I’ve been in this same office since April of 1999 and have personalized it with lamps and posters and a quilt on the wall. I’ve spent a lot of hours here. When I first sat down at this desk, I was an accountant wondering if I’d made a foolish choice by deciding to change careers. I turned into a programmer in this room. This space feels more important to me than any of my other cubicles or offices, and I’ll be a little sad to leave it.
I’ll really miss my window. I think I’ve ranted before about how on the initial plan for the new building I had one but on the final plan I didn’t, with the office I was slated for instead occupied by one of the people who is coordinating the move, the same person who’d coveted my space all along. Coincidence? I think not. But I didn’t fuss about it, because I’m still in the power corridor, with my boss and the VP of Sales and the head of Sys Admin. I could do a lot worse. Besides, my closest counterpart doesn’t have a window either, so it’s not like I’m being singled out for shabby treatment. I can always quilt myself a window substitute; there are some lovely stained glass patterns out there.
I’ll miss a lot of things about my commute route, too. No longer will I be able to stop at Wal(star)Mart in the mornings when no one else is there or at the Pet Supplies Plus that sells Bubba’s litter cheaper than I can get it near home and has a herd of store cats who turn up in the most surprising places on the shelves providing entertainment along with my errand fulfillment. I’ll miss seeing the animals at the farm park (though I don’t know how much longer they’ll be around given that the horse barn and the nursery nearby have been replaced by subdivisions in the last couple years). I’ll miss driving by all the houses and seeing their holiday decorations, especially the place where they put a ring of ghosts dancing around a tree out at Halloween. I won’t get to find out how the people who seem to be making a zig zag fence finish their project. I know there’ll be fresh landmarks on the way to the new office, but can any match the Angst Insurance Center or the house that’s painted lilac right down to the porch rails? I’m skeptical.
There are some things I won’t miss about this location. Some are very minor, like the strip of wallpaper that was put in upside down and bothers me whenever I notice it, which is often because it’s on the wall my desk faces. I’m sure the paper hanger thought it wasn’t a one-way pattern, but it is; the other strip that was put in during the same repair is barely noticeable. Some are more annoying, like the nearly impossible left turn I have to make to exit the parking lot when I work normal office hours. I won’t miss my neighbors. They’re not bad guys, but they’re loud and I have a hard time tuning them out. In the new layout, they’ve all been put in one area and it’s not the one I’m in. I’ll be in the quiet and serious grown up section.
I get my first look at the new building tonight. I’m sure I’ll grow to like the place, but I’m concerned about the commute. It’s about the same distance from home, but the most direct route takes me through some of the worst rush hour congestion in metro Detroit with no time-saving alternatives available. I guess I’ll just have to see how bad it is after the first of the year when everyone goes back to work. I hate to think about it, but maybe I’ll have to change my schedule to come in early so I can miss the worst hours on the roads. Get up earlier? Ouch.
A year ago, I was bleeding in a womanly way.