Saturday, July 21, 2007
Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy
Ok, so I've been a bit gloomy of late, so here's an all smiles edition of The Corner. As you may know, my new job won't start for another month, so I've been working at a friend's uniform sales company in South Florida. I'm really enjoying the job. The work itself is simple...mostly packing shirts in boxes and shipping them all over the US and Canada...but the people I work with are wonderful. "A" is an older Puerto Rican lady with a million stories and some very strong opinions. She's a blast, although sometimes her conversational momentum is a bit difficult to deflect. She's the kind of person who will move the moon and stars for the people close to her, but Heaven help you if you arouse her ire.
My other coworker is "M". She's a younger woman in her late 20's who has had, to say the least, a rough life, but she is one of the most cheerful people I've ever worked with. She's funny and very good at teaching me the ropes. I think that she is unused to people being nice to her because she keeps telling me what a good person I am. She has a young son that she thinks the world of, and is very easy to talk to.
My boss, "R", is the father of my dear friend "J" in Holland, which is how I got this gig, and he has always had my deepest respect and admiration. It's a pleasure to watch him in action. His is an old-fashioned work ethic where he deals with as many of his customers and subcontractors in person as he can, and it's obvious that most, if not all of his clients deal with him as much out of loyalty as financial expedience. Unfortunately the possibility of making enough money there isn't feasible, or I'd consider a career change.
This next grin comes from overseas. I have a dear friend/pen pal in England named Susie. We corresponded by mail years ago, but I am a terrible letter writer, and she is always busy with the local council, town's women's guild, community theatre, and her not small family, so our communications were sporadic but always heartfelt. A few months ago I received a lengthy email from her detailing her exploits, and, in her oh-so-British way, apologizing profusely for her laxity of writing. I responded gleefully and assured her that no offense was taken and that I was always glad to hear from her. Then some time passed, and a mutual friend here in the states forwarded an email he received saying that she had been moved to a different hospital. Now I had not heard of her being in the hospital at all, let alone being moved, so I was quite concerned. "P", the mutual friend, did his best to find out what was going on, and finally got an answer from someone over there who said that she had cancer of the spine and pelvis, and that she didn't have much time left. It was like a blow to the gut. I pondered what to do, and finally sent her an email asking her to send me her phone number. P had tried to call them, but only got the voice mail. I wasn't expecting an answer to my email, then Thursday I got an uncharacteristically short message with the number and a quick request that I do, indeed, call. This did not ease my fears, and this morning, with great trepidation, I called. Susie answered and was bright, and cheerful, and very much alive. Yes, she has a tumor on her lower spine, and had it gone untreated much longer this story would not have a happy ending, but she is responding to chemo, and if they can get the tumor small enough it will be operable. She's not having fun, but the morphine is helping, and she hopes to make an almost complete recovery. And there was much rejoicing.
Ok, I'm home for a couple of days, so Mrs. Marius and I are off to the movies. May your weekend be filled with smiles.