CUWAM- Office Warfare/ Weekend Cease Fire

It is Tuesday, and I am a day behind in the weekly Catch Up with a Mate post…

Last week…seems a distant memory, purposefully repressed, compartmentalised in my brain, in a newly sign posted area: ‘ Caution: Danger Zone- Enter at your own risk’

Office warfare, with colleagues, clients ( students) we are designed to serve, with academics, service staff ,IT consultants, bus drivers, dogs off leash in parks…you name it…Warfare on any was ON.

9am-5pm office warfare…from sunrise to sunset ..we assembled each morning, a motley bunch of office admin staff, ready to do battle with 500 eager students, ready to take on the best that Australia’s oldest learning institution had to offer…in learning ( not administration)

It was a bitter battle, a daily assault on the  humble office worker, attempting to assist not wound the moral of the newly arrived student. Paper stacks of academic transcripts, subject approvals and  identification paperwork formed barriers between ‘ us’ ( the worker) and ‘them’ ( the student) Try as we might to promote a peaceful transition for all new students into academic life at our place of was futile…. Our cheerful office worker smiles often induced tears and tantrums….hand gestures that were not of the friendly hand shake variety…. On and on the war went….Each day the humble office workers came back for more…minutes turned into hours, days into weeks, weeks into years ( you get the idea)

Oh I forgot to mention that it rained all week…homes in the Sydney region were forced to evacuate due to rising rivers and risk of flooding…Entire days passed without the sun bothering to grace our summer sky for a mere 5 minutes…..and to add insult to injury….I had the flu..I was sick…the kind of illness that plants a message in your brain that you will only recover if you spend long stints wrapped up in your doona ,, watching ‘ Days of Our Lives’ episodes, whilst sipping camomile tea….S.I.C.K….It was the kind of message I really needed to follow through on…but how could I?? Our office was under attack, troops were needed to keep the enemy at bay…I had no choice but to take my germs to work and spread the misery….

Ah…but there was but one glimmer of hope, ray of sunshine offered last week. A pearl of wisdom was imparted…My manager saying that she could see a future for me at an airport, as a check in assistant for those passengers who had the misfortune of missing that precious flight to Germany, or who lost there passport ‘ somewhere’ in the duty free shopping centre…My manager said I would prosper in a career calming down the hyperventaling, the distressed, the angry, the fatally wounded….and I found peace with this?

Yes I did…For all week I assisted the hyperventalating, the angry, the tear soaked….and I did it to the best of my ability…Sure I copped a bit of abuse whilst I did this…But I was able to provide compfort and care…and in most cases ( not all!!) send the distressed soul on the path to happiness, to locate that lost shoe or student card! Oh….what a F.U.N week

So I guess it comes as little suprise that this week, in the evenings, in my ‘down time’ I took time out to watch the BBC series’ Come Fly with Me’…a mocumentary about a fictional airport in Britian…and the ‘characters’ responsible for making the  experience of flying ‘special’ for each and every one of its customers…Take a look at the snippet…I think we can all learn from this series, produced by the boys responsible for ; Little Brition’:

I guess it is important to advise that the weekend did come…Nursing my war wounds, I took my sorry self out for breakfast on Sataurday morning, to Bills in Darlinghurst..Happiness on a plate…but I sat next to…a student…Oh well….With Mardi Gras Parade on the the city that weekend, the cafe was abuzz with spray tan, sequins and squeals of delight..and I quickly forgot my weekly occupation and got caught up in the party vibe.

Time spent in the garden resulted in a fresh war wound…a palm branch punctured my toe…nothing a coffee with the parents could not fix, then a catch up nine years in the making with the devine Ali, a travel friend of mine, who after 11 years in the UK…has decided to come home ( and I could not be happier)

A catch up nine years in the making was always going to be intense…more coffee eased the pain of racking over nine years of hot gossip in a Paddington Cafe….On Sunday the sun shone, and I decided to spend the day indoors at Bondi Westfield spending money from a wonderful source: credit card

And at the days end, I shed a tear….for office warfare was to begin again….and I found myself feeling slightly uneasy…determined to self settle myself I pressed repeat on the DVD player….an in an instant my happiness returned…’Come Fly with Me’ transported me away from my office based fears to a tropical island in the Bahamas….as the character Precious Little would say ‘ Praise the Lord!!!’

3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Dad
    Mar 08, 2012 @ 04:40:42




  2. Lisa Kelly
    Mar 27, 2012 @ 07:31:26

    I can say from someone who works in an airport, this is a fairly accurate description of the stereotypes to be found working there!


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