Nothing is forever. Change is inevitable. Businesses fail. People retire. People move. My office is closing.
Over the years, I got used to the low stairwell ceiling and the faulty plumbing of this old bank building. The ding-dong of the door chime when someone stood before the entryway. The mannerisms of people who visited more than once. I watched as new mail carriers seasoned and lost weight instead of losing letters. I greeted various delivery people and signed for lots of packages. I witnessed machines wear out and be replaced while the water jugs emptied one cup at a time.
Payments were entered. Statements were sent. Lawsuits were filed. Deals were made. Court cases were closed. I typed in three different wheeled-chairs behind two different desks. ZoomText stayed with me. On neon sticky notes I wrote down endless passwords. I faxed and copied and scanned and filed. I fought with filing cabinets and staple removers.
Most days, I brought lunch in. Sandwiches aren’t glamorous, but they get the job done. I mastered using the microwave and fishing out what I needed from the catch-all drawer of utensils and condiment packets. I celebrated birthdays. I commiserated losses. I watered the plants.
When the workday ended, I caught the bus. I caught the bus in the wind and the rain, the sun and the heat. I waited when the bus ran late. I lived through construction reroutes, many operator rotations, and recognized more than a few riders by their style or voice. It was never a dull journey, that’s for sure.
I won’t have to deal with yellers over the phone or smelly pipe backups or lost shoppers looking for the jewelry store around here anymore. My office is closing. What’s next?