Sunday, August 16, 2009

Lessons Learned

I've been sleeping in a mortuary for the past few nights. Long story that involves a bet I lost, and housing-limbo.. Just kidding.

My best friend has this sweet set up where he answers the phones after business hours/on weekends. And in turn, he and his wife and their lilbabykid get to live rent free in a decent-sized apartment. Pretty sweet. except they are homebodies.

Anyway, a marriage came to town, that town was Houston, so they got to a much-needed vacation. I am covering the phones for them while they're gone. As we speak, I'm sprawled out on the couch(sprawled sounded like the wrong word, and I just realized that for some reason, in my head it means "face down"... which I am not...) trying to pass the time in some other way than washing dishes and cleaning up around here.

Here are a few things I've learned (this is my first live-in shift).

1. Everyone I try to explain this to suggests that I just have the calls forwarded to a cell phone, that way I'd be free to leave.... not that simple.

2. This job is definitely designed for a young (maybe not-so-young actually) married couple.
Phones are to be answered within 2 rings, after the 3rd, it will be picked up by a disgruntled Funeral Director(he's a nice guy, but no one wants to get work calls when they're supposed to be off).
This first rule makes life interesting, especially as a single person.
Though I was given permission to have people over (even throw a party if I want) I'm not real big on instigating anything more than late-night card games with a couple (as in 2 or 3) friends. So I've had a lot of alone time. (family was in town and they came to see me a couple of times). Even with other people here, I'm the only one trained and authorized to answer the phones. This means that any task I undertake(no pun intended) cannot keep me from the phones for more than about 8 seconds. This isn't (usually) an issue when there are two people around who are trained on the phones, but with just one... everyday things must be calculated and planned.

For instance, I realized too late that even a small workout can leave you a bit winded, and if the phone rings, you have all of 5 or 6 seconds to catch your breath so you're not huffing and puffing in someone's ear when you answer the phone.
Also, I'm not big on morning showers. I shower before bed. It keeps the sheets cleaner longer, and I sleep better after a shower. However, after 5pm, I am on-duty, for the first 2 days I didn't plan ahead.
With family in town, I have been leaving in the mornings anyway to go hang out with them, i really hate morning showers so I told myself I would just get back a bit before 5 and shower then. Didn't happen.
Saturdays, I'm on duty at 2 instead of 5, again, I didn't make it back with enough time to shower.

So... I haven't showered since Wednesday. no time before 5pm on Thursday and Friday and, with one person, the Saturday shift that starts at 2pm doesn't end until 8am on Monday(I'm on-duty all night Saturday, all day on Sunday and all through Sunday night).

Another thing. When I went shopping for food for the weekend, I didn't seem to notice that what I was stocking up on was a LOT of dairy. (milk and cereal, Ice cream(for smoothies), quesodilla fixings(shredded cheese, sour cream, canned chicken, salsa), ham and cheese saniches... and Kulfi(sp) that my friends left for me.

That's a lot of dairy. I wish I had realized.... Oh well I think, I'll raid the fridge for something less dairy-y.... Pickles! yay! So I went from an overly dairy-laden diet, to a very pickled diet (no "preserves" joke here). These aren't just any pickles though, they are home grown, home pickled and canned. I finished off the already opened jar (that means I even ate the garlic clove) and went to the pantry for another. The new jar is spiced! yum. I have a suspicion that this one was seasoned by my friend's dad. it's pretty spicy though still quite dill-icious.

I'll probably be feeling the effects of my diet for the next couple of days.

It hasn't been too bad, in all. Only a few calls.... And I owe my friends for all their hospitality, they're too good to me.

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