I’ve dug this piece from way back, long before I even started this blog. It’s a brief account I did to celebrate the first few weeks at my first job as a receptionist.
My first outing to the place which has been my home till now…only that at the time, I had no idea that I would be there for as long as I have been. Was just checking out the place and hoping to meet one of the bosses who would hopefully give me my “three-week” visa for a temporary job. It is a blistering hot Friday afternoon and I’m in for a long walk from Hurlingham shopping centre. I am wearing my brand new Italian leather shoes (gifted by my sweet sister Enid) and they are doing some major injustice to my feet which are in turn screaming murder. I’m told to report early Monday morning to start work and I leave thinking…”okay…that was easy…” So I painstakingly make my way back to Hurlingham where I drop in on my sister Kari who gives me some more comfortable shoes and by so doing, rescues my toes from their misery.
My first day of work – yay! The morning is freezing cold and sadly, I am not dressed for it. My chaperone for the day warns me that if I am to continue working at the reception, I must be attired appropriately – in winter gear! I tell her that I’m fine (just for the record, three weeks later, I’m desperately sick and I know I’m suffering the effects of the reception chill. I then proceed to suffer in silence because during this time, just about everyone had been telling me to dress warmly and since in my wisdom I had disregarded their advice, I could not dare to let them know what has happened).
I meet so many people whose names I forget promptly and only the interesting ones stand out…like Arcadius and Chrispal. (By day number two, I have most names in the bag).
On this day I learn that operating a switchboard is actually both an art and a science, so I think I need to go back to school!
Today is the day I will be interviewed for the position of “Receptionist”. I am as nervous as can be. I blunder my way through the interview the only thing that keeps me from fainting is the kind demeanour of my two interviewers. As I reflect on how the interview went, I think up about two hundred reasons why I wouldn’t be successful.
I am informed that today is half-day. [“Half-day” is a morning of prayer for all staff, held on the first Monday of every month at the Resurrection Gardens.] My first half-day; the famous July cold has checked in and I am not at all prepared…you know with a shuka and a winter jacket because I had no idea what half-day was and how I needed to prepare for it. I am hardly able to pray because of the intense cold and all I can think about is how I should have taken two cups of tea instead of one only. Anyhow, I survive the trauma and live to see another day.
Looking back, I cannot deny the hand of God in my journey into the corporate world from a receptionist to where I am now. I have been through much but I understand that God uses every experience to disciple His children.