Wednesday, July 25, 2012

On Vacation - at work!

Ottawa has been hot and muggy for weeks now, with no end in sight. The daily chores of life seem Herculean labours when the humidex is high. Nevertheless, my husband and I manage to keep on top of things, getting the bills paid on time, fulfilling our commitments and obligations (in my case, getting certain writing assignments in on time) and trying to be good citizens by doing our laundry during the off peak periods of electricity use. We don't want to cause a brown-out.

A lot of people don't seem to be trying as hard as we are.   I'm thinking about people who owe us money and show no signs of paying up. I'm pondering my course of action. But I'm also fed up with people spending their days in air-conditioned environments where they are supposed to be serving the public, and failing to do so - like a library employee at the information desk who was rude when I asked about a program that used to be offered. Turned out I knew more about it than he did.

Then, in another workplace, there's an administrator who supports an instructor who is encroaching upon a certain seniors' program. Who cares about seniors being crowded out?

In another work environment,  a program head  needed me to write an item a.s.a.p. to meet her deadline. She said she'd get back to me with the revised item and more details. That was six weeks ago. Maybe she's on holidays.

In the late spring I snail mailed and emailed five friendly and reasonable  queries/proposals/requests to five different people in authority positions. None has been acknowledged.  Even if the answer is "No", it would be nice to get an email saying so.    If I'd dropped them down a well instead of mailing them, at least I would have heard a splash.

Let's not forget the doctor who didn't feel like taking her turn serving drop-in patients on a Sunday, and who took out her displeasure on a patient who felt so in need of medical attention that he stood outside the clinic on a sore foot for half an hour in the heat so as to be there when the clinic opened. .

And there are a home supply store staff who sit at a desk to be consulted about home improvement matters - but turn out to be unable to measure accurately or to add fractions.

None of these people were working outdoors, risking dehydration and lightheadedness from the heat and humidity. All were comfortable cool indoor environments. All seemed to be on vacation - at work.

Yes, we're all only human and we all have personal problems and concerns which get exacerbated by heat and humidity. I'm probably foolish to try to accomplish anything this summer. After physiotherapy this morning (with a wonderful, kind, capable physiotherapist)  I plan to lie low and work on the novel I'm writing.

But when things cool down, I may write a couple of complaining letters. Some years ago,  I encountered a rude a postal outlet employee who didn't undertand that I needed postage for a "stamped, self-addressed envelope" to go inside the main envelope. I went home and phoned Canada Post. Within a week, someone from Canada Post was there retraining the staff at that outlet. Soon after that, the rude postal worker disappeared.

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