They say, be careful what you ask for. If you ask a question of the cosmos, sometimes the angels whisper their reply softly with the gentle affirmative caress of a late-afternoon breeze. "Yes, my child". But, there are other times. The angels aren't always listening to Enya records. Sometimes, they need to be heard more clearly. Sometimes they all have to get together stomping their feet and whacking their tambourines, and shouting "HELL, YES, DUDE!"
In a post last week, I was commenting on how my temporary job status had deteriorated. I received an insulting job offer, for less money, fewer hours, and more inconvenient hours than anything I had ever received from the temp agency. I drew the line, and said I would not accept this step downward, but then I started questioning my actual value as a worker, and my self-esteem plunged.
So, the following morning I was rolled out of bed at quarter to six a.m. by the cheery ting-a-ling of my telephone. It was Hank (not his name), my boss from the digital imaging assignment, the organization from which I had formerly received an impending full-time job offer. Hank wanted me to fill in for some absences, and put in some time on a long-term project that is due at the end of the month. I was so eager to return, that I arrived on-site one bus early, hit the coffee shop, and shot up the elevator. There is so much joy in this job, in my cubicle on the 13th floor overlooking Lake Michigan
After an all-too-short day, I was standing at the bus stop, beside the Wells Building, waiting to go home. A woman in a beige trench coat, mid-fifties, approached the corner, waiting for the same bus. She walked up to me, as if to speak, but then turned around abruptly, and stood next to the building a few steps down. But then, she changed her mind, and came back up to me. She said, "OK I have to tell you. Did you ever have a day that was so filled with joy that you just have to tell someone about it?". Suppressing a grin, I said, cautiously, "I had one of those, once.". "Only once?.... " But she saw I was kidding. She proceeded to tell me how she once had a temp assignment with a company she just loved working for, but then had to leave due to a long-term medical issue. Today, however, she received an assignment for the very same job, and it was for her a triumphal return to a blissful workplace experience. We continued talking as the bus came and picked us up. Her assignment may also develop into a full-time position for her at the same organization. Sound familiar?
How could this be? Why me? Why today? Very seldom does anybody walk up to someone at a bus stop, much less someone with a complete mirror image of an almost parallel life.
So, what more could possibly go right with this day?
Although I didn't know it until the following morning, when I checked my email, Excelsior has acquired another regular reader. As the (now) four of you know, a regular reader is one of the most powerful affirmations a great journalist such as myself can receive, that someone is out there listening. And she is a writer, with two published works, and a blog which I found to be a welcoming collection of escape into a new world of imagination. I plan to do lots of reading there. Samantha Mozart is her name (follow link). While you're there, say "Hi!" to Moriarty.
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